Still no timetable for returning Boeing 787 to flight
US Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, the country's top transportation official, said Wednesday the goal was to return the 787 to service as soon as possible but that the government would not rush the plane back either.
"We are working diligently with Boeing to figure out the problem and find a solution. Our goal is to get this done as quickly as possible, but we must be confident that the problems are solved before we can move forward," LaHood told the Aero Club of Washington, an aviation advocacy group.
FAA Administrator Michael Huerta, appearing at the same event, said the review was looking at the 787's certification, manufacturing and assembly processes, and that he could not speculate on an end date.
For at least one Chinese customer, the uncertainty about the Dreamliner's production and delivery schedule has meant delays in launching new routes.
"Frankly, it's a little disappointing the aircraft has been delayed so many times," said Chen Feng, chairman of Hainan Airlines Co Ltd parent HNA Group, in an interview at the World Economic Forum in Davos. "We still think it's a good aircraft, but this has had some effect on our planning."
Hainan has 10 of the planes on order.
The grounding of the Dreamliner, an advanced carbon-composite plane with a list price of $207 million, has already forced Japan's ANA to cancel 151 domestic and 26 international flights scheduled for Jan. 23-28, affecting more than 21,000 passengers, the airline
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