Dozens of Boeing 787 Dreamliner flights have been ordered to remain with 60 minutes flying time of an airport due to concerns about their Rolls-Royce engines.
While Trent 1000 engines manufactured by Rolls-Royce have been called in for inspections, the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has ordered that some 787-9 aircraft must remain within an hour of an airport.
As per the FAA directive, the 60-minute limit refers to the restriction prior to inspections, while the limit remains 140 minutes after inspection requirements are satisfied.
The directive gives a deadline of June 9 for all aircraft operating the engine to be inspected or face grounding.
Among the airlines most affected are British Airways and Virgin, each of which operates 17 Dreamliners. Additionally, both Air China and Air New Zealand have been forced to ground some of their 787s.
In a statement sent to Arabian Business, British Airways – which operates 789-9 aircraft to a number of destinations including Jeddah, Muscat and Abu Dhabi – said that the airline “would never operate an aircraft if it was unsafe to do so.”
“Like other airlines around the world, we are carrying out details precautionary inspections on Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engines on some of our Boeing 787-9s to ensure we meet all the relevant regulatory requirements,” the BA spokesperson added.
“Our flight planning teams have enormous experience in managing flight paths on our global network every day and always ensure we meet the relevant safety regulations.”
Meanwhile, a Boeing spokesperson said that the company “will continue to work with Rolls-Royce, our customers and regulators to fully resolve the issue.”
“Boeing is deploying support teams to mitigate service disruption,” the spokesperson added.
According to Boeing, approximately 25% of the 787 Dreamliner fleet is powered by the Trent 1000 Rolls-Royce engine variant.
“These Ads [airworthiness directives] do not impact current production 787s, the Trent 1000 Package B, Trent 1000 TEN or GEnx-1B engines,” the spokesperson added. “Safety is our highest priority. The EASA [European Aviation Safety Agency] and FAA ADs address this issue, and ensure the continued safe operation of the 787 fleet.”
Rolls-Royce declined to respond to a request for comment from Arabian Business.
Source: Arabian Business