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NASA’s Aviation Safety Reporting System released an alert bulletin May 19, 2020, warning the FAA of a possible problem connected to alcohol wipes in the cockpit.
The ASRS report that spurred the bulletin was submitted by an airline captain: “At cruise, smelled like wire burning, put masks on, then visible smoke was coming from pedestal. Flew barber pole until approximately 15 km, landed, shut down airplane, no more visible smoke, but still bad smell in airplane. Kept masks on and opened windows. Opened door, smell dissipated, deplaned. Mechanic found fire/overheat system circuit breaker popped wires were burnt. He told me Maintenance Control advised him this has happened to several airplanes. They believe alcohol from wipes is shorting out wires.”
In the bulletin, Becky L. Hooey, director of the NASA Aviation Safety Reporting System, notes that “We do not have sufficient details to assess either the factual accuracy or possible gravity of the report. It is our policy to relay the reported information to the appropriate authority for evaluation and any necessary follow-up.”
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