Japan's ANA cancels Dreamliner flights over engine trouble

A Boeing 787 Dreamliner.
A Boeing 787 Dreamliner.PHOTO: AFP

TOKYO (AFP) - Japan's All Nippon Airways (ANA) said on Thursday (Aug 25) it is cancelling some Boeing Dreamliner flights owing to a problem with the plane's engine, and warned of more groundings.

The carrier, the biggest worldwide Dreamliner operator with a fleet of 50 jets, said nine domestic flights scheduled for Friday would be halted so it could fix a problem with a Rolls Royce-produced engine.

The move came after ANA grounded a domestic Dreamliner flight earlier on Thursday, also citing an unspecified engine problems.

"We will definitely cancel nine flights tomorrow and more afterwards but we don't know the specifics yet," an ANA spokeswoman said.

In February, a Tokyo-bound ANA Dreamliner flight was forced to return to Kuala Lumpur due to engine trouble, marking another hit for an aircraft plagued by setbacks.

Rival Japan Airlines, also a major Dreamliner customer, has nearly 30 of the aircraft but the engines are produced by General Electric.

The Dreamliner, built largely with lightweight composite materials that reduce fuel use, has been hit by a series of problems during development and production as well as since its first commercial flight in late 2011.

In 2013, the Dreamliner was grounded globally over an electrical problem.

Early that year several planes experienced problems with batteries overheating that caused a fire on one aircraft. Changes were made to prevent recurrence.