Japanese airline All Nippon Airways (ANA) announced on July 4, 2018, it will cancel 113 domestic flights between July 6 and July 12, 2018, to conduct engine inspections on its Boeing 787 aircraft. The cancellations will affect some 21,000 travelers, according to ANA. How much more of these engine troubles, groundings and flight cancellations can airlines around the globe take?
Japanese airline will cancel over a hundred of flights in July 2018, in order to inspect the Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engines for compressor issues that have led to service interruptions for airlines globally. The affected engines power ANA’s Boeing 787 Dreamliners, the Japanese airline told reporters on July 4, 2018, Reuters reports. In total, 136 engines are affected, ANA states.
The British engine manufacturer has been experiencing major issues with its Trent 1000 engines for months. Companies flying the 787s have reported multiple problems with those engines throughout 2017. Corroding compressor blades, issues with blade coating, engine shut-down in-flight...
ANA has already gone though all that too. The Japanese airline had to replace the engine blades of all 50 of its Boeing 787s after corrosion and cracking of turbine blades caused three engine failure incidents back in 2016.
But this year, ANA is apparently going through what Air New Zealand experienced in December 2017, when it had to cancel flights and make scheduling changes due to the maintenance issues with the Rolls-Royce engines on its 787-9 jets.
Overall, a compressor problem in the Trent 1000 package C engine has forced several airlines around the world, such as British Airways, Virgin Atlantic and the aforementioned Air New Zealand to ground their 787s - news that made headlines across the industry.
In July 2017, Thai Airways went so far as to announce the intention to claim financial compensation from Rolls-Royce, after the airline had to ground some of its 787-8s Dreamliner fleet due to engine problems.
To make things worse, in June 2018, Rolls Royce said it had found the same package C issue on package B engines. Hence, ANA says it has been conducting inspections on Trent 1000 package C engines under instruction from Japan’s transport ministry, with an expansion of inspections to include package B engines leading to the flight cancellations, Reuters reports.
According to the Japan National Daily The Mainichi, the Japanese transport ministry has strengthened regulations on aircraft engine inspections since the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) issued a warning in April 2018 that the Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engines powering Boeing 787 Dreamliners could malfunction.
The grim reality is that these engines power the global fleet of Boeing 787 Dreamliners, amounting to around 160 aircraft in total. According to Boeing, about 25% of the Dreamliners are powered by the faulty engines. And as for ANA, the Japanese airline is the world’s biggest Boeing 787 operator by fleet size. As of June 25, 2018, the airline has 215 Boeing aircraft in its fleet and operates the 787s, 777s, 767s, and 737s.