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Boeing Halts 787 Dreamliner Test Flights

November 10, 2010

Boeing announced Wednesday that it has canceled tests flights of its 787 Dreamliner after one made an emergency landing in south Texas.

“Until we understand the event, we’re not going to schedule any new flights,” Lori Gunter, a Boeing spokeswoman, told CNN.

The cancellation comes after the new Boeing 787 Dreamliner made the emergency landing in Laredo, Texas on Tuesday afternoon after the pilot said there was smoke in the cabin.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said that it landed during a test flight.

FAA spokesman Lynn Lunsford said that the jetliner landed at Laredo International Airport after the flight crew reported smoke pouring into the cabin from the back of the twin-engine aircraft.

Lunsford said that those aboard evacuated safely by using the plane’s slides.

“We are continuing to gather data regarding this event,” Gunter said in a statement. “It’s too early to tell what may have gone wrong.”

The 787 Dreamliner is Boeing’s next-generation passenger jet that is said to be a highly fuel-efficient aircraft made with composite materials.
 
The jetliner made its first flight in December 2009 after two years of delays.  However, the head of Boeing’s commercial aircraft division told CNN in July that the Dreamliner could still make its debut in early 2011.

Boeing has taken nearly 900 orders for the aircraft around the world.

Image Courtesy The Boeing Company

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