The launch customer for Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner, Japan’s All Nippon Airways, isn’t expecting a quick resolution of the battery problems that have grounded the high-tech plane.
The airline has canceled all Dreamliner flights through March. In some cases, the airline has substituted other aircraft and in others it has told passengers it simply won’t be flying.
Airline safety authorities around the world have ordered 787s grounded until they and Boeing figure out why lithium ion batteries aboard two Dreamliners caught fire last month. One plane had just landed at Boston when the battery blaze broke out. The other Dreamliner was in the air over Japan when the battery malfunctioned. The plane made an emergency landing.
In the case of ANA’s daily flight from Sea-Tac Airport to Tokyo’s Narita Airport, ANA’s first U.S. route with the Dreamliner, the airline will fly the route only on even numbered days with the exception of March 4. ANA is substituting a larger Boeing 777 for the 787 on the route on even days.
All Nippon has canceled all flights on a new route from San Jose, Calif., to Tokyo that were to be flown by a Dreamliner.
ANA has the largest fleet of Dreamliners, 17, in the world. Other airlines have also canceled Dreamliner flights or used other aircraft. United Airlines, whose six Dreamliners are also grounded, canceled flights through the end of February.