March 22, 2013
IT APPEARS that Boeing’s comments about the smoldering batteries on its 787 have annoyed the National Transportation Safety Board. The company gave its own account of two battery incidents, which include a fire, at a detailed press briefing in Tokyo last week. The problem is that the NTSB is still investigating the incidents.In a letter to Boeing, the NTSB says failure to provide advance notice of what executives would say at the briefing is “inconsistent with our expectations” for a party to an investigation.Boeing officials said several things at the briefing that raised eyebrows. One was the belief that there was no fire inside the battery itself in either of the two incidents. But the NTSB has never ruled out a fire. Pictured above are Nippon Airways' Boeing 787 "the Dreamliner" passenger jets that were parked on the tarmac at Haneda airport in Tokyo. Documents related to a federal investigation into a battery fire aboard a Boeing 787 show firefighters struggling to tame a small but worrisome blaze that has left investigators relieved that it happened after a flight and not during one. Another smoldering battery nine days later in Japan prompted the grounding of 787s worldwide. Investigators still don’t know the root cause.