Boeing is continuing to investigate the electrical fire that forced an emergency landing of the companys second 787 on Nov. 9, in Laredo, Texas. The company grounded its fleet of six 787 test planes after the incident. A week after the fire, Boeing has yet to determine the effect of the event on 787 deliveries.
I will tell you that we dont have a lot of margin in the flight test program, Randy Tinseth, Boeings chief of marketing for commercial airplanes, told the Associated Press. The airplane hasnt been flying for a week. We dont know when it will be resolved, so you can do the math. He said that the first delivery is still nominally scheduled for the mid-first quarter of 2011.
The company had been expected to deliver the first 787 in February to Japans All Nippon Airways. The Dreamliner program already was running nearly three years behind schedule before the electrical fire. And some 787 customers had said their Dreamliner deliveries had been postponed by as much as 10 months before the incident last week.
No decision has been reached on when flight testing of the 787 will resume. Before that decision can be made, we must complete the investigation and assess whether any design changes are necessary, Boeing said in a statement.
Although testing is on hold, Boeing brought back two 787s to Seattle a plan that the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration approved, Boeing said. Boeings first 787, which was in Rapid City, S.D., arrived at Boeing Field shortly around noon Tuesday. The pilots reported that the flight was uneventful, wrote Boeing spokeswoman Lori Gunter in an e-mail. The fifth 787 flew back from Victorville, Calif., late in the afternoon.
Boeing did not conduct tests on the flights to Seattle.
Boeing had a few new details about the Nov. 9 fire on the second 787. The fire lasted less than 30 seconds, the company said. And the airplane would have been able to return to an airport for normal landing after the fire, Boeing said.
Boeing workers removed a panel from the rear electronics bay on the second Dreamliner where the fire started. That panel was sent to Seattle late last week to be inspected. Boeings team in Texas has completed its inspection of the second 787 and is preparing to install a new power panel and new insulation material, Boeing said. The workers also are repairing minor structural damage from the event.
Boeing is evaluating how long the work will take. Boeings shares dropped 1.3 percent Tuesday to close at $62.78.
MORE HBJ HEADLINES
Boeing expands Oklahoma City facility, business presence 4:11 p.m. Windows 10 fixes annoyances in earlier versions Don’t blame economy: More millennials living at home Fed holds steady on interest rates Taiwan, Thailand join deal to end tariffs on tech products Briefs: PUD offers heating, weatherization incentives
Our new comment system is not supported in IE 7. Please upgrade your browser here.