Airlines ground Dreamliners after emergency landing

It is likely that a battery problem forced the emergency landing

Following an emergency landing of an All Nippon Airlines Boeing 787 Dreamliner in Japan this morning, Japan Airlines and ANA have both taken the decision to ground their fleets. The ANA aircraft, on a domestic flight from Yamaguchi to Tokyo Haneda, made an unscheduled landing in Takamatsu after smoke was allegedly seen in the cabin. There were 129 passengers and eight crew members on board. Emergency chutes were deployed to evacuate the plane.
According to a statement from the airline, it is likely that a battery problem forced the emergency landing. This is the same issue that caused a fire on an empty Japan Airlines plane last Monday. On that occasion, a lithium-ion battery that powers the Dreamliner whenever the engine is shut down on the ground caught fire at Boston’s Logan International Airport.
“It made an emergency landing at Takamatsu because there was an error message during the flight,” ANA spokeswoman Naoko Yamamoto said about today’s incident. “It is true that the aircraft has recently seen a series of troubles. But we cannot say if this has something in common with previous problems.”
The US Federal Aviation Authority has ordered a safety probe into the aircraft type, in which Japan’s transport ministry is also participating. The two Japanese airlines are the biggest operators of the B787, which is also currently operated by United Continental and Qatar Airways, among others. More than 800 Dreamliners are on order from airlines all over the world.
TTG Digital / The Guardian
[photo courtesy Boeing]