ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, 29 April 2013.Ethiopian Airlines resumed Boeing 787 Dreamlinercommercial airliner to service starting Saturday, 27 April 2013, with a flight from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to Nairobi, Kenya.
Ethiopian Airlines CEO Tewolde Gebremariam and Boeing Vice President of Marketing Randy Tinseth were on board this first commercial flight in the world since the grounding of the Dreamliners on 17 January 2013, following the directive issued by the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the Ethiopian Civil Aviation Authority due to incidents related to battery issues on Japanese carriers.
FAA officials last week certified solutions proposed by Boeing to the battery issues allowing Ethiopian and other operators to retrofit the new and additional systems and resume flights with the Dreamliners. Boeing and Ethiopian engineers are implementing solutions certified by the FAA. Following the completion of the retrofitting work on the airplane and smooth test flight by Ethiopian pilots, the Ethiopian Civil Aviation Authority approved the commercial flight resumption of Ethiopian Dreamliner. These solutions will be done on all four Ethiopian Dreamliners one after the other.
"The Dreamliner is the most advanced commercial aircraft, which has enabled passengers travelling with Ethiopian to enjoy the ultimate on-board comfort. During the five months our four Dreamliners were in service, we were very pleased with their performance, and the feedback from our passengers has been overwhelmingly positive," says Tewolde Gebremariam, CEO of Ethiopian.
“Ethiopian is a leading airline in Africa and we take pride in their achievement,” explains Ray Conner, president and CEO, Boeing Commercial Airplanes.
Ethiopian is the first African airline and the third airline in the world to own and operate the Dreamliner, which entered service at Ethiopian Airlines in August 2013.