NTSB Investigates Boeing 787 Dreamliner Problems

Boeing 787 Dreamliner ProblemsBoeing 787 Dreamliner Problems Create Concern

According to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), there are certain Boeing 787 Dreamliner problems that may render the aircraft unsafe to fly. The agency is requesting that the Federal Aviation Administration again evaluate the dangerous lithium-ion batteries after a fleet was declared unsafe to travel following two airplane crashes in 2013.

There are currently 140 Boeing 787 Dreamliners in use with various airlines, and many passengers enjoy the spacious cabins, the cutting-edge entertainment technology and large windows. However, there were several Boeing 787 Dreamliner problems in 2013 related to battery fires that grounded the entire fleet for three months. Although these Boeing 787 Dreamliner problems were hoped to have been in the past, such may not be the case.

The NTSB is at odds with the FAA over the way that the fleet was cleared to fly after the apparent Boeing 787 Dreamliner problems. In a press release issued on May 22, 2014, the NTSB announced a series of recommendations related to the certification and evaluation of lithium-ion batteries for use in airplanes as well as the certification of new technology. To address each of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner problems as well as potential complications in other aircraft, the NTSB has asked the FAA to do the following:

  • Develop guidance for thermal runway test models
  • Develop a thermal runway test for airplanes to determine how the batteries will fare in the event that the internal short circuit should fail
  • Include a panel of expert consultants early in the certification process for new technologies installed on airplanes
  • Re-evaluate the risk of internal short circuit for batteries currently in use
  • Require the test to be part of the certification of airplane designs in the future

The recommendations are derived from the NTSB’s investigation of the fire event that occurred in a lithium-ion battery on a Boeing 787 at Boston Logan Airport on January 7, 2013. According to investigators, the battery involved in the fire showed evidence of unintended electrical interactions between cells, the electrical interfaces and the battery case as well as an internal thermal runway. The final report on this investigation is believed to be completed and available in the fall of 2014.

Airplane accidents can occur due to a number of factors that many of those who have been injured may not consider. Although some may initially believe that an airplane crash occurs due to pilot or staff error, in many cases, airplane defects such as the alleged Boeing 787 Dreamliner problems with the lithium-ion batteries can cause devastating and catastrophic consequences. If you have been injured, contact Attorney Group today to learn more about your legal rights and whether you are eligible to seek compensation for your injuries.