Boeing 787 Dreamliners Are Safe And Company Has Addressed Quality Issues Satisfactorily, Says A Combined Review By the Company And FAA

  @SnehaShankar30 on March 20 2014 4:37 AM
Boeing 787
The tailwing of a model Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft is pictured at the Boeing booth at the Singapore Airshow on Feb.11, 2014. Reuters/Edgar Su

A combined review done by The Boeing Company (NYSE:BA) and the Federal Aviation Administration, or FAA, into the airplane maker's pioneering 787 Dreamliner, has concluded that its design and manufacture are sound.

According to the report released Wednesday, the FAA had ordered a review of the planes last year, after grounding the entire fleet following a series of problems with onboard batteries. The report said that some Boeing suppliers did not follow the right industry standards for quality control but added that “effective processes” had been put in place since then to correct the problem.

“The CSRT (Critical Systems Review Team) determined the B787 meets its intended level of safety based on (1) the fundamental soundness of the airplane’s overall design and (2) the effective processes that have been defined and implemented to correct issues that arose during and after certification,” the report said.

The report also concluded that the FAA should increase its supervision of foreign and "high-risk" subcontractor facilities and recommended that Boeing should ensure its suppliers "are fully aware of their responsibilities" and formulate a way to ensure that they "identify realistic program risk."

Although Illinois-based Boeing’s 787 is reportedly one of the most advanced planes in the market, it has been hit with a series of problems that have cast doubts on the plane’s airworthiness. Many of the company's customers, including Qatar Airways, Air India and LOT Polish Airlines have reported various problems with the plane.

Earlier this month, Boeing announced that it had found hairline cracks on the wings of some 787 jets under production after a Japanese supplier, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (TYO:7011), warned the airline manufacturer about it. Last July, a fire started aboard a 787 jet owned by Ethiopian Airlines while it was parked at London’s Heathrow Airport. In August, All Nippon Airways, or ANA, found faults in the battery wiring of locator transmitters on two of its Dreamliner airplanes, during checks. In another instance, a section of the fuselage of an Air India-owned Dreamliner was found missing on landing.

"The review team identified some problems with the manufacturing process and the way we oversee it, and we are moving quickly to address those problems," Michael P. Huerta, an FAA administrator, reportedly said in a statement, according to The Wall Street Journal.

“Boeing has mitigated issues related to aircraft assembly and manufacturing using proprietary processes and its QMS. Overall, the subteam noted continued improvement in all areas, as evidenced by the reduced number of interventions, negligible changes to the current processes, and higher quality of output coupled with an increased B787 production rate,” the FAA report said.

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