Ethiopian to Continue Flying Boeing 787 Dreamliner After Fire Incident at Heathrow

by zemen

Ethiopian Airlines says it is to continue operating its fleet of Boeing 787 Dreamliners after one caught fire at London’s Heathrow airport on Friday.

Investigators are trying to find the cause of the blaze, which took place months after the aircraft was grounded worldwide over a battery problem.

Heathrow’s runways were closed for 90 minutes on Friday, and some evening flights delayed by more than six hours.

Ethiopian Airlines took delivery of four Dreamliners in 2012.

The company said its plane had been parked at Heathrow for eight hours before smoke was spotted.

“We have not grounded any of our aircraft,” the carrier said in a statement.

“The incident at Heathrow happened while the plane was on the ground… and was not related to flight safety.”

The Dreamliner has been moved to a special hangar away from the terminals to allow the investigation to take place.

ethiopian airlines boeing 787 london

Smoke was detected from the aircraft after it had been parked at Heathrow for more than eight hours

The UK’s Air Accidents Investigation Branch of the Department for Transport is expected to lead the inquiry, with Boeing, the US Federal Aviation Administration, the US-based National Transportation Safety Board and Ethiopian Airlines also taking part.

No time frame has been given for the probe.

Investigators will hope it is not a recurrence of the problems with its lithium-ion batteries that grounded the entire global fleet of 787s for three months earlier this year, said BBC News correspondent Richard Lister.

Several aviation experts have suggested that the fire appears to have broken out some distance from the two batteries.

Fire-retardant foam was sprayed at the airliner and an area on top of the fuselage in front of the tail appeared to be scorched. … Read More on BBC

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