Fuel tank contamination affects former SAM Avro RJ100s

Inspection of the Avro RJ100s being returned to BAe by SAM Colombia has revealed some corrosion in the wings. This is thought to have resulted from microbiological contamination of the fuel, which can occur in climatic conditions such as are found in Colombia. BAe alerted SAM, who grounded the three RJ100s they still had in service (four have already been returned to BAe, and two more had been withdrawn from service pending their return to England), causing considerable disruption to their services. As a precaution, BAe issued an All Operators Message informing them of the problem and drawing their attention to the inspection and maintenance practices necessary to avoid such contamination. The problem has also delayed deliveries of the reconditioned aircraft to Braathens Malmö Aviation. Initial deliveries are now expected in early 2000.

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