Washington: The US Army is grounding its entire fleet of Chinook helicopters amid concerns about engine fires, the Wall Street Journal said citing officials.
US Army Materiel Command made the decision to ground the fleet out of an abundance of caution while they inspect over 70 helicopters that contain a part suspected to be linked to the problem, as per the report. Army officials are aware of a small number of engine fires with the helicopters, and the incidents didn't result in any injuries or deaths, the official said, as per the report.
The grounding of the Chinook helicopters could pose logistical challenges for American soldiers, depending on how long the order lasts.
Wall Street Journal citing sources stated that the grounding was targeted at certain Boeing Co. and took effect within about the last 24 hours. The Army has about 400 helicopters in its fleet, one of the US officials said.
"The safety of our soldiers is the Army's top priority, and we will ensure our aircraft remain safe and airworthy," an Army spokeswoman said, as per the reports.
The Chinook is a heavy-lift utility helicopter that is used by both regular and special Army forces, ferrying more than four dozen troops or cargo. It has been a staple of the Army's helicopter fleet for six decades. The Chinook is made by aerospace company Boeing.