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Southwest Airlines, Brazil's Gol Ground 13 Boeing 737 NG Aircraft

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Southwest Airlines (LUV) grounded two Boeing Co 737 Next Generation aircraft, while Brazil's Gol Linhas Aereas Inteligentes (GOL) grounded 11 aircraft, after U.S. regulators ordered urgent inspections last week.

Southwest said it found signs of cracking on two aircraft and removed them out of service until repairs are completed. The airline reported its findings to Boeing and the FAA.

The Dallas-based company has about 100 more aircraft to examine under the FAA requirement.

Gol said that it grounded 11 planes where it found evidence of the need to replace a specific component, whose characteristics were not compliant with the standards set by the maker.

The Brazilian airline said that grounding of aircraft will affect 3% of passengers through December 15.

The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration, acting after an alert from Boeing, issued an urgent directive last week requiring the checks on planes with more than 30,000 total flights by October 10. There are an estimated 165 aircraft that fit that description in the U.S., including 737-600, 737-700, 737-800, and 737-900 models, the FAA said in a statement.

"This condition could adversely affect the structural integrity of the airplane and result in loss of control of the airplane," FAA said in the order.

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