Boeing 787 Dreamliner Gets Flight Control Revamp Mandate From FAA

Boeing 787 Dreamliner
A Qatar Airways Boeing 7878 Dreamliner airplane is pictured at Leonardo da Vinci-Fiumicino Airport in Rome, Italy, March 30, 2019. (Photo: REUTERS/Alberto Lingria/File Photo)

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has mandated that Boeing apply changes to some parts of the 787 Dreamliner. Changes are also expected to be applied to the jet's flight control software.

According to Reuters, the FAA mandate was rolled out to address what the regulator referred to as "unsafe" operating procedures tracked from some parts of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner.

Boeing said the mandate was related to service bulletins released by the American jet maker in 2017 and 2018 that revealed damage-prone areas in the 787 Dreamliner's tire and wheel "threat zones."

Amid criticism and scrutiny from global regulators, Boeing stressed that the FAA directive was already resolved. "This issue has been long since resolved with system improvements that have been incorporated into production for all 787 models," the airplane maker said.

This is not the first time the Boeing 787 Dreamliner was caught in controversy. In a New York Times report published last month, employees claimed that the South Carolina factory working on the model was home to poor production practices.

The report cited internal emails and interviews with current and former employees. Some employees said the Boeing 787 Dreamliner factory prioritized quantity over quality in its production. The company has since denied all claims.

Another Boeing model, the 737 Max, is also under the watchful eyes of international agencies and aviation regulators. The jet has been grounded worldwide following Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines crash in October and March respectively.

Due to the 737 Max crisis, Boeing's first-quarter revenue dropped significantly. According to CNN, profits during the first three months of 2019 slipped by 21 percent in comparison to revenue records from the previous year.

While Boeing could not provide exact figures on how much it has lost since the 737 Max models were grounded by many airliners across the world, the company said working to resolve the crisis may have hit the $1 billion mark.

Furthermore, the U.S. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee is reportedly considering to hear the certification probe issue on the Boeing 737 Max on May 15. Three people with knowledge of the matter reportedly revealed the information.

Head of the panel, Representative Peter DeFazio, previously said that a hearing on the 737 Max's initial certification process will be discussed in the near future. A spokeswoman for DeFazio refused to provide a comment on the latest report.

Little is known about the upcoming hearing but it is expected that FAA Administrator Dan Elwell and FAA Aircraft Certification Service executive director in 2018, Earl Lawrence, will be called to attend the hearing.

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