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Japanese Airlines Ground Dreamliners

In a move that the flying public may have been waiting to happen, Japan’s two major airlines and the biggest customers of the new Dreamliner jets have grounded the 787 aircraft following yet another incident that led to an emergency landing Wednesday (1/16/13) in that country.An All Nippon Airways jet on a domestic flight was reported to have battery problems and a burning smell was detected in the cockpit and cabin, forcing the 787 to land at Takamatsu airport in western Japan.  Japanese officials later told the press that the jet was found to be leaking electrolyte and burn marks were found around the main battery located beneath the cockpit area.All Nippon Airways flies 17 of the 787s and Japan Airlines, which has seven of the 50 in service, reportedly told the Japan transport ministry that it was voluntarily grounding the jet following this latest incident.  In a press conference in Japan, All Nippon Airways Senior Executive Vice President Osamu Shinobe told the media that most new aircraft experience “teething problems” when they are first flying and apologized to passengers and their families for the grounding.Japan’s transport ministry called the latest emergency landing “a serious incident” because it could have led to an accident, the media is reporting.  Japanese officials were sent to further investigate at the now closed Takamatsu airport.  The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) reportedly are sending an investigator to Japan.All Nippon Airways changed 14 flights to other aircraft and canceled 31 domestic flights and seven international flights.  Japan Airlines reportedly canceled eight flights and two were changed to another aircraft.  It was not announced how long the Dreamliners would remain grounded there.

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