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Qatar Airways' Boeing Dreamliner fleet back in flight

The first Qatar Airways Boeing 787 Dreamliner returned to the air yesterday after a ruling by safety authorities in the United States that it was safe to fly again.

The first Qatar Airways Boeing 787 Dreamliner returned to the air yesterdayafter a ruling by safety authorities in the United States that it was safe to fly again.

Flight QR116 from Doha to Dubai landed safely at 1.15pm with the chief executive Akbar Al Baker among its passengers.

"I always said I would be the first to fly on a Qatar Airways 787 once it returned to service," he said.

"After a setback that not only affected our own worldwide operations, but those of many carriers worldwide, we look forward to now deploying the Dreamliner on other key routes over the coming weeks."

The airline's fleet of five Dreamliners was grounded earlier this year following a directive from government aviation regulators in both Washington and Doha, issued because of suspected problems with the airliner's battery systems.

In all, 50 Dreamliners were grounded in January after the batteries on an All Nippon Airways 787 overheated in flight, forcing an emergency landing. Another incident aboard a Japan Airlines 787 on the ground at Boston airport started a fire.

The new airliner is the first to be constructed mainly from composite materials, making it up to 20 per cent more fuel-efficient than existing jets, says Boeing.

Mr Al Baker was joined by on the flight by the president of Boeing Middle East, Jeffrey Johnson, and Boeing's deputy fleet chief, David Silver.

 

dblack@thenatiuonal.ae

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