GCAA bans a specific Delta 767 from flying to Ghana over fuel-related issue

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The Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) has banned a Delta Air Lines Boeing 767-332 aircraft, registered N195DN, from flying to Ghana over technical issues.  

In a letter to Delta Air Lines, dated August 19, 2022, and signed by the GCAA’s Director-General Charles Kraikue, the Ghanaian authority notified the airline that the GCAA would be inspecting the aircraft owing to a fuel-related issue, according to a GhanaWeb report.  

However, in a statement issued to AeroTime Delta confirmed that it is fully compliant with directives outlined by the GCAA.  

“We continue to be in contact with aviation stakeholders in Ghana to reiterate our commitment to offering the highest levels of safety and industry-leading service to our Ghanaian customers,” the airline said in a statement issued to AeroTime.  

“Delta has conducted our own inspection and maintenance and determined that the aircraft is fully compliant with all safety and technical requirements. Delta continues to operate a normal schedule between Accra and New York JFK. Delta’s highest priority is the safety of our passengers and employees worldwide,” the statement said.  

GCAA Investigation 

The investigation followed events that took place on August 13, 2022, where Delta’s 767-332, (N195DN) was forced to return to the gate due to a “technical problem”, the letter added.  

The authority also highlighted a similar event that took place on July 24, 2022, which left several passengers travelling to Accra stranded.  

In late July 2022, Newsweek reported that Delta Air Lines flight DL9923 outbound from JFK to Kotoka International Airport in Accra was forced to make a U-turn over the Atlantic Ocean due to a fuel imbalance issue in-flight. 

Findings of the GCAA’s investigation, revealed in the letter and reported by GhanaWeb, include: 

  • The crew reported a fuel imbalance issue with the left main tank. 
  • The inbound crew experienced this same issue on the flight leg to Accra, i.e. on July 31, 2022. 
  • This was the same aircraft that had to return to JFK on July 25, 2022, a few hours after take-off from JFK, and which was widely reported on by multiple media outlets. 

“It was expected that after such a negative reportage, Delta Air Lines would have thoroughly investigated the issue to arrive to the root cause of the failure before dispatching the aircraft on flight,” the GCAA said in the letter, an image of which was included in the GhanaWeb report.  

“Rather, the aircraft was flown within the United States as number of times and then dispatched again to Accra, only for the problem to reoccur,” the GCAA continued.  

“The Authority finds this unacceptable. Therefore, with immediate effect, Delta Air Lines is being advised not to dispatch the B767-332 with registration number N195DN for flights to Accra. As your ageing 0767 fleets are much of much concern to Ghanaian travelers, Delta Air Lines must put in place a plan to change the type of aircraft on the JFK-ACC-JFK route as soon as practicable,” the Ghanaian authority added.  

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