FAA orders 787 grounded after 2 battery incidents

  • Herald staff and Associated Press
  • Wednesday, January 16, 2013 3:38pm

The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration is ordering the grounding of the Boeing Co.’s 787 pending safety inspections.

The FAA only has authority over U.S.-based carriers. United Airlines is the only American carrier that currently operates Dreamliners, with six 787s in its fleet. The FAA is sending its recommendation to aviation regulators of other countries.

The FAA’s grounding of Boeing 787s comes after an All Nippon Airways’s 787 made an emergency landing early Wednesday in Japan and a 787 operated by Japan Airlines caught fire last week in Boston.

Both Japan Airlines and All Nippon Airways already grounded their fleets of 787s.

“As a result of an in-flight, Boeing 787 battery incident earlier today in Japan, the FAA will issue an emergency airworthiness directive to address a potential battery fire risk in the 787 and require operators to temporarily cease operations,” the FAA said in a statement. “The FAA will work with the manufacturer and carriers to develop a corrective action plan to allow the U.S. 787 fleet to resume operations as quickly and safely as possible.”

Boeing shares dropped 2 percent in after hours trading and were down 3.4 percent in regular trading Wednesday.

Boeing has delivered 50 of its new 787s to airlines around the world. Here’s a look at who owns them:

All Nippon Airways, 17

Japan Airlines, 7

Air India, 6

United Continental Holdings Inc., U.S., 6

Qatar Airways, 5

Ethiopian Airlines, 4

LAN Airlines (Chile), 3

LOT Polish Airlines, 2

Source: Boeing Co., airlines.