Dreamliner probe could take weeks

Dreamliner probe could take weeks

By Phil Davies

Dreamliner probe could take weeksIt may take “weeks” to complete an investigation into battery problems that hit two Boeing 787 Dreamliners, according to the US National Transportation Safety Board.

A battery on a Japan Airlines 787 caught fire, while a malfunction forced an All Nippon Airways Dreamliner to make an emergency landing last month.

The incidents led to the grounding all 50 of the 787s in use. The NTSB said that the battery being used in the 787s may not necessarily be unsafe.

NTSB head Deborah Hersman said: “I would not want to categorically say that these batteries are not safe.

“Any new technology, any new design, there are going to be some inherent risks. The important thing is to mitigate them.”

She added that the NTSB was “running through the macro level to the microscopic level on this battery”. “But I think we are probably weeks away from being able to tell people here’s what exactly happened and what needs to change.”

A Boeing spokesman told the BBC the firm was “choosing not to comment on Ms Hersman’s remarks as the matter was under active investigation”.

Meanwhile, Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce said problems with the 787 had done nothing to alter the airline’s orders and options for 50 Dreamliners.

He told broadcaster ABC in Australia: “We believe that Boeing are a great airline manufacturing company, they’re a great engineering company and they will fix this problem eventually.

“They’re still producing the aircraft, so the production line hasn’t stopped. They have stopped delivering aircraft to customers.

“Our aircraft are due to arrive, the first one in August. We haven’t been advised of any delay at this stage.”

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Qantas A380 forced to divert after engine problem

Qantas A380 forced to divert after engine problem

Nov 04, 2011 08:30AM GMT

Qantas A380 forced to divert after engine problem

A Qantas Airbus A380 ‘superjumbo’ flying from Singapore to London was forced to divert to Dubai due to engine problems.

The airline said the aircraft landed safely in the Emirate “following an issue” with one of its four engines. The A380 was carrying 258 passengers and 25 crew when the aircraft suffered a problem with oil pressure, forcing one of the engines to be shut down for more than two hours.

One of the passengers on board was actor, writer and comedian Stephen Fry. He tweeted: “Bugger. Forced to land in Dubai. An engine has decided not to play.”

The incident came a year to the day since the engine of another Qantas A380 developed problems over Singapore, forcing a two week grounding of the fleet. But Qantas described the latest incident as a “one-off” and said it was working to arrange alternative flights to take passengers on to London.