A Tokyo-bound 787 Dreamliner was having such trouble – toilets refusing to flush – while up in the air that it had to fly back just two hours after takeoff. It was also having trouble warming food on board. According to Japan Airlines (JAL), the plane was flying from Moscow late Wednesday, but encountered the glitches said to be caused by electrical fault.
“It was hit by trouble — toilets became unable to be used and the device to heat meals also had a problem,” said a JAL spokesman. On board the Dreamliner were a total of 151 crew members and passengers. The spokesman claimed that an electrical fault caused the malfunction and it had nothing to do with the jet’s battery. Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner was grounded for a number of weeks earlier this year when two different planes had their batteries, which are lithium-ion based, overheated. One of the planes even caught fire while parked.
Boeing has drawn a lot of attention this year, though not favourably, as its jets have been showcasing issues, not to mention those concerning production delays. Back in August, a Dreamliner bound for Kumamoto also had to fly back because of a radar malfunction. Earlier that month, Japan Airlines rival operator All Nippon Airways detected wiring defects on three of its planes. As if one issue is not enough in a month, Boeing also got involved in a maintenance problem on an international flight from Tokyo to San Diego.
The flag-carrier JAL is now probably relieved for its bold choice, signing a $9.5 billion deal for 31 Airbus A350s. The agreement, which will be carried out over ten years, is the first between Japan Airlines and the European aircraft maker. “Airbus’ largest order for the A350 and is the largest ever order we have received from a Japanese airline,” said Airbus CEO Fabrice Bregier.
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