Jun 03, 2013

    China's first Boeing 787 arrives

    CHINA'S first Boeing 787 arrived in the country yesterday, state-run media said, less than two weeks after Beijing regulators approved the aircraft, which had faced safety problems.

    The high-tech Dreamliners were cleared to return to service worldwide last month, after all 50 were grounded in January, following two overheated-battery incidents.

    The plane delivered to China Southern Airlines, one of the country's industry leaders, "has been installed with improved batteries that had passed various tests", China Radio International reported on its website.

    "The 787 arrived on Sunday in Guangzhou", a southern city where the company is headquartered, it said.

    China Southern Airlines and Hainan Airlines have each ordered 10 of the planes, while Air China has ordered 15.

    The president and chief executive of Boeing Commercial Airlines, Mr Ray Conner, called the delivery of the first plane a "significant new milestone in the strengthening partnership between Boeing and China".

    A battery fire on an aircraft parked at a United States airport and a smouldering battery on another, which caused smoke and fumes that forced an emergency landing, made regulators ground the 787 in January.

    US officials cleared the planes to fly last month, following alterations to the plane's lithium-ion batteries.