Japan Airlines grounds a pair of Dreamliners on engine ice fears

Marion Dakers
BOEING’S new 787 Dreamliner planes were hit by a fresh safety warning over the weekend, after the manufacturer said ice crystals might interfere with the engines in certain weather conditions.

The firm said the engines used on some Dreamliners, made by General Electric and flown by 15 airlines, should avoid flying within 50 nautical miles of high-altitude thunderstorms, which might contain ice crystals and cause the engines to lose thrust.

Japan Airlines has grounded its Dreamliners on two routes as a precaution.

“Boeing and JAL share a commitment to the safety of passengers and crews on board our airplanes. We respect JAL’s decision to suspend some 787 service on specific routes,” a Boeing spokesman said.

The ice issues are the latest problem to befall the Dreamliner, which was launched after years of delays in 2011. All Dreamliners were grounded earlier this year as inspectors hunted for the cause of smoke in some of the planes’ batteries, and airlines have also had to contend with faulty fuselages and wiring problems.

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