An investigation is under way into the apparent inflight failure of a Rolls-Royce Trent engine on a Norwegian Boeing 787 as it began a flight from Rome to Los Angeles.
Details of the Aug. 10 incident remain sparse. The aircraft was climbing out of Rome Fiumicino when one of its Trent 1000s seemingly failed, scattering debris across a suburb close to the airport.
Pictures initially carried in the Italian newspaper La Reppublica purport to show at least two people holding handfuls of small metal fragments and car windscreens smashed by debris from the incident.
The Aviation Herald website identified the aircraft as Boeing 787-8 LN-LND and said that 25 cars and 12 houses were damaged by falling parts.
The aircraft, carrying 281 passengers and 11 crew, landed safely back at Fiumicino around 20 minutes after the incident.
Norwegian is one of several operators of 787s that have been affected by a series of problems on the Trent 1000, including "hot corrosion" apparently caused by airborne pollution. The engines have also suffered from IP compressor-rotor cracking.
With an investigation into the latest incident underway by Italian accident investigators, both Norwegian and Rolls-Royce said they were limited in what they could say about the event.
“On Saturday, flight DY7115 from Rome Fiumicino (FCO) to Los Angeles (LAX) experienced a technical engine issue a few minutes after take-off. The aircraft returned to the airport where it landed safely,” said a Norwegian statement.