The Boeing 787 Dreamliner is one again in the spotlight after an incident on Thursday that saw a jet under Vietnam Airlines almost landed at the Melbourne Airport without the landing gear deployed.
According to Simple Flying, the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) created an incident report stating that 787 Dreamliner flight VN781 was approaching land in Melbourne when the Air Traffic Control advised the crew that the jet's landing gear was not extended as it should have been before approaching the runway.
The landing was aborted after the Boeing jet was close to land for over 600 feet. The pilot then maneuvered back up and circled the airport before making a safe landing on the Ho Chi Minh to Melbourne flight.
Industry experts said that if the traffic control team did not notice and alert the crew, the aircraft could have been seriously damaged. Aside from engine and software problems, the Boeing 787 Dreamliner jet could have caught fire.
Some analysts questioned whether the incident had something to do with the pilot error or if the failure to deploy the landing gear was due to an electrical issue. Full details about the report have yet to be revealed.
Just a few months back, the U.S. Department of Justice launched a probe into the Boeing 787 Dreamliner's production after reports emerged about a particular manufacturing plant allegedly having poor production practices.
It is unclear whose fault the latest incident is. On the other hand, some analysts noted that the 787 Dreamliner has been caught in previous incidents including a report of smoke detected in the aircraft cabin of a United Airlines flight.
The Sydney Morning Herald reported that air safety officials have already started investigating the incident. Data from FlightRadar24 showed how the aircraft dropped to around 675 feet before aborting the supposed landing.
Experts said aborted landings can be common sometimes. However, the scenario of coming so close to the runway without the landing gear in place is a rare sight and has raised concerns among industry analysts.
The ATSB clarified that while the investigation is still underway, it will immediately alert the involved groups and airlines should a "critical safety issue" be discovered during the probe. Vietnam Airlines manager Huy Trinh also confirmed that the company is working with Australian authorities to find out what transpired during the incident.
The Boeing 787 Dreamliner isn't the only jet by the U.S. airplane giant that has been put into the hot seat. The 737 Max remains grounded worldwide following two fatal crashes that took 346 lives.