The failure of an engine on a Southwest 737 that sadly resulted in the death of a passenger caused a major review of the fleet of 737s. Inspections were identified for the engines in the affected range and everyone was scrambling to find facilities in which to carry out the checks. ATS at Paine Field is one of Southwest’s suppliers and they took in a number of the jets. Towards the end of the fly day that Paine Field was having, three Southwest jets emerged from ATS’s facility. They were towed to the north end of the field.
Here they were started up and they took it in turns to taxi down to where we were and then depart. One of the jets was an 800 series and may not have bee affected by the inspection but could have been at ATS for other work. The 700s were quite possibly part of the inspection process. After a day of light traffic and warbirds, the appearance of three Southwest 737s and their subsequent departures made for a change of pace.