It’s the aircraft family that seemingly cannot catch a break, and for American aircraft manufacturer Boeing, it must be one their getting increasingly tired of having to sort out.
As broken by the Wall Street Journal and confirmed by the Federal Aviation Administration, Boeing has suspended deliveries for their 787 Dreamliner once more, citing a documentation issue with a crucial fuselage component.
A suspension of deliveries comes only a handful of months after the plane-maker received approval to restart deliveries for the program after over a year of the program being halted. This year-long pause wasn’t the first time a similar thing had occurred. However, since 2018 the program has been in the headlines for all the wrong reasons, and customers are now more than ever beginning to get frustrated as their deliveries continue to be jeopardised thanks to these suspensions.
It is reported that while Boeing was conducting a review of certification records, they determined that there was an analysis error by a crucial supplier. This analysis focused on the forward pressure bulkhead.
As a result, Boeing now needs to complete the required documentation to get the plane re-approved for delivery. However, it must be said that the final delivery for the 787 was conducted back towards the end of January. Boeing will do everything in their power to ensure this isn’t another prolonged suspension, as this would only severely impact its existing pressures across programs, suppliers, customers and employees.
Boeing has confirmed that they don’t believe this suspension will affect their long-term production goals. Still, it will notably impact short-term deliveries to customers expecting the Dreamliner. Moreover, it comes at a frustrating time for airlines wishing the series as they prepare for the summer season or generally need additional capacity to cope with power, expand and rebuild their network or something else.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on a program that seems to cannot escape headlines for the wrong reasons. Something seemingly pops up again whenever we think we’re past the worst, and it’s smooth sailing.
While this suspension in deliveries promises not to extend as long as the previous instance, any delays are increasingly becoming more frustrating for customers and Boeing as the program continues to see negative implications, whether documentation-related or quality assurance.