Two Airbus A350 XWB airliners on international flights, one last November and another on January 21st, 2020, had their starboard Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engines shut down en route and fail to restart when pilots attempted the recovery procedure. The most recent incident was on a Delta A350 bound for Seoul, which diverted to and landed safely in Fairbanks, Alaska after the engine failure. The airline which experienced the failure in November 2019 has not been identified, but is believed to be a Korea-based Asiana A350 flying from Seoul to Singapore, which diverted to Manila on November 9th.
In both cases, the engines shut down some time after a pilot spilled a drink on the centre console where engine controls are located. The Delta flight lost its engine 15 minutes after a drink was spilled on the console, and the suspected Asiana’s engine shut down an hour after tea was spilled on the console. In both cases, the flight recorder indicated the electronic engine controller had closed the high-pressure shut-off valve after receiving inconsistent output from the control panel. In both cases the integrated control panel and electronic engine controller were replaced and the planes returned to service.
Flight Global reports that Airbus and will send a communication to operators “on recommended practices for handling beverages on the flightdeck”. Perhaps they should install more cup holders.
I once saw a programmer spill an entire cup full of regular Pepsi-Cola onto the shelf below a Univac 1108 maintenance panel, where it ran down into the electronics below. Nothing appeared to happen and neither he nor I ever said a word about it while we were still working there.