Boeing to review safety of new 787 after fire breaks out on plane
Published 12/01/2013 | 05:00
US regulators are to perform a major review of the design, manufacturing and assembly of Boeing's 787 Dreamliner after a fire on a Japan Airlines jet this week and several incidents last year.
"We are confident about the safety of this aircraft, but we're concerned about these incidents and we will conduct the review until we're completely satisfied," Michael Huerta, head of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), said at a press conference in Washington.
The FAA is looking to reassure itself, regulators in other countries and the flying public that Boeing's newest and most technologically complex jet is safe. The 787 has become Boeing's fastest-selling model, with 848 orders through to the end of 2012. The examination stops short of emergency actions such as mandatory fixes or a fleet grounding that the FAA has imposed after someaccidents.
The US National Transportation Safety Board classified the fire in Boston as an "incident", not an accident. "I believe this plane is safe and I would have absolutely no reservations of boarding one of these planes and taking a flight," US Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said.
Boeing fell 2.6pc to $75.10 at 1 pm in New York. An analyst at Stifel Nicolaus & Co in New York said that this was a good time to buy Boeing shares, predicting that the review would bolster confidence in the Dreamliner.
"We have complete confidence in the 787 and so do our customers," Boeing Commercial Airplanes President Ray Conner said at the press conference.
The Dreamliner conserves fuel by using five times more electricity than other similar jets and by saving weight with a fuselage and wings made from composite materials.