The FAA grounded Boeing's 787 Dreamliner passenger jet Wednesday afternoon, saying a recent series of safety scares required urgent action.

The Federal Aviation Administration said it would make airlines to demonstrate that the plane's innovative batteries were safe before allowing further flights. It has notified foreign air travel agencies of its action as well, Reuters reported.

Japan's two leading airlines grounded their fleets of Boeing 787s early Wednesday after one of the Dreamliner passenger jets made an emergency landing in western Japan, the latest in a series of incidents that have heightened safety concerns over a plane many see as the future of commercial aviation.

All Nippon Airways Co said instruments aboard a domestic flight indicated a battery error, triggering emergency warnings. The incident was described by a transport ministry official as "highly serious" - language used in international safety circles as indicating there could have been an accident.

Boeing shares fell 2 percent in after-hours trading to $72.80 after the FAA announcement.