Exclusive-U.S. FAA finds Boeing 787 certification documents incomplete -sources -Breaking
Eric M. Johnson and David Shepardson
SEATTLE/WASHINGTON – Two sources familiar with this matter stated that Boeing (NYSE) Co’s documentation to get approval to resume 787 deliveries after a year has not been received by the U.S. Air-Safety Regulators.
U.S. Federal Aviation Administration has identified some omissions from Boeing’s documentation. It was submitted in April and portions have been sent back to Boeing, according to one person.
Another person stated that it wasn’t possible to predict if FAA concerns will cause a delay in the resumption of deliveries. These have been suspended since last year because of production problems.
Boeing Chief Executive Dave Calhoun emphasized the submission on the company’s April 27, earnings call. He called it a “very significant step” and said it was preparing 787s for delivery. But he didn’t give a date.
The matter was reported to the media by people who were briefed.
Boeing spokesmen said that the company maintains a clear dialogue with the FAA and works closely with them on any remaining steps.
The FAA spokeswoman declined to give more details, stating that “Safety is the driving force behind our reviews.”
The U.S. planemaker must clear its swollen Dreamliners twin-aisled inventory and its most-sold 737 MAX jets to be able to recover from the overlapping pandemics and jet-safety crisis. This task is complicated by the supply-chain bottlenecks in Ukraine and the war in Ukraine.
Boeing has been working through repairs and inspections in an industrial headache that cost $5.5 billion, preventing deliveries of the 787 from being made. Boeing currently has over 100 advanced composite twin-aisle aircraft in its inventory. This is worth approximately $12.5 billion.
In February the FAA declared that Boeing would not be allowed to self-certify any new Boeing 787 airplanes. Steve Dickson, then-FAA Administrator, stated that Boeing needed to make “a systematic fix in their production processes.” They have to deliver the high quality product on their production lines that we expect and to which they have committed.”
According to the FAA, February was a good month for airworthiness certificates. The FAA also stated it would continue issuing them until Boeing can be confident that its quality control system and manufacturing process consistently produce 787s meeting FAA design standards.
Reuters reported late April that Boeing had advised major airlines and suppliers of parts that delivery would resume in second half this year. One industry source said deliveries could resume within weeks.
The certification package for Boeing is an extensive set of data and documents that proves the plane’s compliance. However, the FAA makes the final decision. This package details the inspections and repairs Boeing plans to make on numerous planes that have been affected by manufacturing defects. This is an essential step to ensure that Boeing can continue deliveries.