All Nippon Airways (ANA) has announced further cancellations of four international routes from March 31 to May 31 due to the grounding of B787 aircraft.
The affected routes are Tokyo Narita-Seattle, Tokyo Narita-San Jose, Osaka Kansai-Seoul Incheon and Nagoya Chubu-Seoul Incheon. The adjustment will affect 464 flights and approximately 11,500 passengers.
The airline will continue to operate the Tokyo Haneda-Frankfurt route because of high demand, but a B777-300ER will be deployed instead of the Dreamliner. This will actually increase the daily capacity from 158 to 247. Service will be suspended on April 10 and 12 as the airline expects passenger traffic on those two days to temporarily recede.
According to a spokesman of ANA, the latest adjustment will increase the total number of flights cancelled due to the Dreamliner grounding to 3,601, with over 157,800 passengers affected.
All 50 Dreamliners currently in commercial operation have been grounded since last month, following a series of incidents that began with an electrical fire (story here) and a fuel leak on separate B787 aircraft operated by Japan Airlines (JAL). Shortly after a crack was discovered in the cockpit window of one of ANA's Dreamliners, and a week later, another of the airline's B787 had to make an emergency landing after an alarm signal on a battery was set off (see story).
Concerns that the electrical fire was caused by onboard lithium-ion batteries led to the FAA ordering all Dreamliner aircraft to be grounded, a directive endorsed by the European Aviation Safety Agency. Earlier this month, FAA granted Boeing permission to conduct test flights of Dreamliners as part of ongoing investigations (see story).
Air India and Qatar Airways, meanwhile, have extended B787 service cancellations (see story) until late March, and Ethiopian Airlines and United will maintain the changes until mid-April and June respectively.
The ANA spokesperson that further decisions/announcements regarding flight adjustments will depend on updates provided by Boeing, FAA and the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism. “ANA’s 787 fleet will remain grounded until all investigations are complete,” she said.
For more information, please visit www.ana.co.jp