The Federal Aviation Administration said it is ordering a check of maintenance records at all U.S. airlines to ensure commercial aircraft are complying with safety regulations.
The checks will be performed at the headquarters of each air carrier, an FAA spokeswoman said. They are not expected to affect flight schedules.
The safety checks come on the heels of an investigation into inspection procedures by Southwest Airlines Co. Southwest last week grounded 38 aircraft for reinspections and repaired four planes for fuselage cracks, according toThe Business Review.
The Dallas-based airlines was fined by the FAA last month $10.2 million for missing inspections and then continuing to fly planes with passengers on board even after realizing the error. Southwest plans to appeal the penalty.
The FAA said it would check compliance with at least 10 safety orders, or "airworthiness directives," at every airline by March 28.
A full audit covering at least 10 percent of all safety directives will be finished by June 30.
FAA to check all airlines to ensure safety reg compliance (3/21)
March 21, 2008