The agency gave no indications about the cause of the fire and said
its final report on the incident at Boston Logan International
Airport would be presented at a public meeting in Washington in the
Members of the investigative team have been working for months in
the United States, Japan, France, and Taiwan in their study of the
Dreamliner battery and charging system.
Regulators grounded the global fleet of Boeing Co <BA.N> Dreamliners
for 3-1/2 months after the January 7, 2013, incident at the Boston
airport and a second battery incident on an All Nippon Airways
<9202.T> flight in Japan several days later that prompted an
emergency landing and evacuation.
The Boston fire was discovered by a mechanic who was performing a
routine post-flight inspection and was the only person aboard at the
time. Fire fighters responded and contained the blaze.
Crew aboard the ANA flight reported smelling smoke, but the incident
was never officially ruled a fire.
The NTSB investigation only covers the Boston fire, though the U.S.
agency has assisted Japan's Transport Safety Board with its
The Dreamliner, launched in 2004, offered saving fuel and
maintenance costs through use of lightweight materials and new
construction methods, including global outsourcing of its major
[to top of second column]
Assembly lags put the jet into service in 2011, more than three
years behind schedule. And it has been plagued by problems, often
involving its advanced electrical system.
United Airlines and Qatar Airways both had electrical trouble on
787s before the Boston fire and another Japan Airlines Dreamliner
experienced fuel leaks.
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration launched a wide-ranging
review of the 787's design, manufacturing and assembly after the
Meanwhile, Boeing overhauled the battery system, adding a steel box
to contain any future fires and a venting system to expel fumes
outside the jet.
In April, the FAA approved the revamped battery system and Boeing
began making repairs to the 50 787s around the world.
Since then, the global fleet has grown to 100, as Boeing has stepped
up deliveries to customers.
(Reporting by Ros Krasny and Bill Trott;
editing by Jeffrey Benkoe, Alwyn Scott and Bernard Orr)
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