Financial News

  • 26 July 2013, 13:18

Dreamliner: Airlines Told To Remove 787 Beacons

The US aviation regulator has advised airlines using Boeing's troubled 787 Dreamliner to remove the existing emergency beacons, following a fire on a flight at London's Heathrow airport.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) published an airworthiness directive advising all carriers to inspect or replace the safety device, made by Honeywell.

The move comes after investigators examined the cause of a fire on an Ethiopian Airlines 787 in early July.

The directive goes farther than the FAA indicated last week, when it said airlines should inspect the units on 787s for pinched wires in the casing and evidence of heat or moisture.

Boeing advised airlines last week to inspect or remove the device, known as an emergency locator transmitter or ELT.

A team from Britain's Air Accidents Investigations Branch (AAIB) looked at a number of components during their examination of the plane at Heathrow.

The investigation included the ELT, which was positioned in the upper rear part of the aircraft, near to the spot where the fire broke out on July 12.

The fire on the Ethiopian plane was one of the most recent problems to occur for Boeing's flagship next generation aircraft.

Problems have plagued instrumentation, battery circuits and some engine items.

The world's Dreamliner fleet was grounded earlier this year after lithium-ion batteries overheated on the planes.

Although it has spent thousands of man-hours investigating the cause, Boeing still has not pinpointed the problem.

The ELT overheating is unconnected to the lithium-ion battery woes.

Despite the problems with the Dreamliner, Boeing posted larger than expected second-quarter profits on Wednesday as deliveries of commercial planes such as the 737 and 777 rose.

Boeing's net income rose 13% to $1.09 billion (711m), or $1.41 per share. During the same period last year it earned $967m (631m), or $1.27 per share. Revenue rose 9% to $21.82bn.