The United States (US) National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has published a preliminary report detailing an incident at Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR), where a United Airlines Boeing 737 MAX experienced an engine fire upon taxi-in.
According to the NTSB’s report, the flight crew were operating flight UA2376 between Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL) and EWR on June 28, 2023, when they received a number one (left-hand side) engine fire indicator on the aircraft’s Engine Indicating and Crew Alerting System or EICAS. Subsequently, the pilots shut down the engine and discharged a single fire bottle, following which the “warning indication ceased,” the NTSB noted.
“There was no visible smoke or fire emanating from the No. 1 engine, so the airplane was towed to the gate,” the preliminary report continued.
When the aircraft arrived at the gate, maintenance personnel present on site saw evidence of a fuel leak from the engine. Furthermore, once the thrust reverser doors were opened, engineers observed “heat damage and sooting” on the engine cases and external surfaces upon visual inspection of the CFM International LEAP 1-B engine.
The NTSB retained the engine for further examination.
The Boeing 737 MAX-9, registered as N37516, returned to service on July 3, 2023, according to flightradar24.com data. The narrow-body jet operated flight UA1556 from EWR to San Juan Luis Munoz Marin International Airport (SJU), Puerto Rico, and proceeded to fly to Houston George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH) on the same day.
In total, the aircraft completed 18 flights between July 3 and July 9, 2023, with two more flights scheduled on July 10, 2023, per flightradar24.com records. According to data from ch-aviation.com, Boeing delivered the 737 MAX-9 on December 30, 2020, and it flew for the first time on April 7, 2019.
The NTSB’s preliminary report detailed that no injuries were reported to the five crew members and 179 passengers that were on board the 737 MAX-9 at the time of the incident.