Tuesday, March 19, 2013
Incoming ANA Head Suggests 787s Could Resume Flights By June
TOKYO (Nikkei)--All Nippon Airways Co. (9202) Senior Executive Vice President Osamu Shinobe hinted during an interview that its Boeing 787 Dreamliner jets might return to service by June if certain conditions are met.
Shinobe, who will be installed as ANA president on April 1, said the carrier "has planned a schedule through the end of May without 787 aircraft," but if repair and other work is all finished before June, "we want to see if we can do something."
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration last Tuesday approved Boeing Co's plan to test modifications to the Dreamliner's battery system. The head of Boeing's 787 program stated Friday that the aircraft could resume service within several weeks.
ANA, which will operate under the umbrella of newly created ANA Holdings Inc. starting April 1, is the largest user of 787s. Shinobe stressed that safety is a priority, and was more guarded than Boeing executives when it came to setting a timetable. He said the airline requested that Boeing develop preventive measures that could assure technological safety.
"We will keep customers in the loop as much as possible," Shinobe said, indicating the firm will make test flight results and other information available.
(The Nikkei, March 19 morning edition)