Airlines ordered to inspect beacons after Boeing 787 fire
Transport Canada directive applies to Airbus, Boeing and other planes
Transport Canada has ordered airlines to inspect the emergency beacons on their aircraft in the wake of a July 12 fire on a Boeing 787 at London’s Heathrow Airport.
The Canadian regulator said inspections should take place on a broad range of planes that have Honeywell beacons, including Boeing, Airbus, McDonnell Douglas, ATR, Lockheed Martin Corp and Dassault Aviation.
British investigators are still determining the cause of a fire aboard a parked Boeing 787 owned by Ethiopian Airlines, but they found pinched wires on a Honeywell emergency locator transmitter.
The beacons are carried by all airplanes to send a radio signal in the event of a crash and help rescue workers locate the wreckage.
The Honeywell ELTs are made in conjunction with Instrumar Ltd, a supplier based in St. Johns. Honeywell said it had produced nearly 6,000 of the devices and supports the move to inspect them, although there has been no definitive ruling on the cause of the fire.
Meanwhile, Japan’s All Nippon Airways is saying it found faulty wiring in the fire extinguisher system of its Boeing 787 jets. Boeing already recommended customers inspect planes with Honeywell ELTs, but Airbus has yet to issue an order.
The Transport Canada directive covers 11 Boeing-made models including the 787, 777 and 737 and seven from Airbus, including the A320, A330 and A380. Airlines were also ordered to check Dassault Aviation SA’s Falcon 7X business jet and Lockheed Martin Corporation’s L-382.
The rule takes effect on Aug. 26 and operators have 150 days to comply.
Other countries grounded the 787 in January after the Federal Aviation Administration halted flights on the planes in the U.S. following two incidents in which lithium-ion batteries overheated. Most of those planes have passed inspection and returned to the air.