Second faulty Boeing Dreamliner in Boston

Jan 09 2013

A fuel leak on a Boeing 787 Dreamliner has caused Japan Airlines to cancel its takeoff from Boston's Logan airport, the second incident in as many days involving the new jet.

The plane, bound for Tokyo, had left the gate when about 40 gallons (151 litres) of spilled fuel were found.

Passengers got off safely and no-one was hurt, an airport spokesman said.

On Monday, an electrical fire broke out at the same airport on board another Dreamliner operated by Japan Airlines.

A spokeswoman for Japan Airlines, Carol Anderson, said on Tuesday that the second Dreamliner had returned to the gate because of mechanical issues and details were not yet confirmed, Reuters reported.

Meanwhile, the US National Transportation Safety Board said that it would not investigate Tuesday's incident because there had not been an accident.

Growing troubles?

On Monday, a fire broke out in a Dreamliner operated by Japan Airlines soon after it landed in Boston from Tokyo.

The fire started after a battery in the jet's auxiliary power system overheated.

Nobody was hurt as passengers and crew had already disembarked.

The Dreamliner is one of the most advanced planes ever built. However, a spate of technical issues has hurt its image.

Last year, a United Airlines flight was forced to make an emergency landing due to an electrical problem.

In December, Qatar Airways grounded one of its 787 Dreamliners after several manufacturing faults caused electric problems similar to those that affected the United plane.

To add to Boeing's woes, the US Federal Aviation Administration said in December that it had identified errors in the assembly of fuel line couplings in the Dreamliner.

It warned that these errors could result in fuel leaking on to hot engine parts and start a fire, cause engine failure, or simply see the plane run out of fuel.

Analysts said the latest incident on the Japan Airlines flight was a blow to Boeing.

"Even though it happened on the ground, rest assured the FAA is asking, 'what if it happened in the air?'" Carter Leake, an analyst at BB&T Capital Markets in Virginia.

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Reproduced under licence from BBC News 2013 BBC

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