Ethiopian Airlines resumed Boeing 787 Dreamliner operations on Saturday, 27 April 2013 with a flight from Addis Ababa to Nairobi.
Ethiopian Airlines CEO, Tewolde Gebremariam and Randy Tinseth, Boeing Vice President of Marketing, were on board this flight, which is be the first commercial flight in the world since the grounding of the Dreamliners.
Ethiopian grounded its four Dreamliners on 17 January 2013, following the directive issued by the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the Ethiopian Civil Aviation Authority due incidents related to battery issues on Japanese carriers.
Last week, the US FAA certified solutions proposed by Boeing to the battery issues allowing Ethiopian and other operators to retrofit the new and additional systems and resume flights with the Dreamliners. Boeing and Ethiopian engineers are implementing solutions certified by the US FAA. Following the successful completion of the retrofitting work on the airplane and smooth test flight by Ethiopian pilots, the Ethiopian Civil Aviation Authority approved the commercial flight resumption of Ethiopian Dreamliner. These solutions will be done on all four of Ethiopian Dreamliners one after the other.
“We are excited to resume our service with the Dreamliners. The Dreamliner is the most advanced commercial aircraft, which has enabled passengers travelling with Ethiopian to enjoy the ultimate on-board comfort. During the five months our four Dreamliners were in service, we were very pleased with their performance, and the feedback from our passengers has been overwhelmingly positive. I look forward to being on-board the first passenger flight on Saturday, 27 April.” said Tewolde Gebremariam, CEO of Ethiopian, before the flight.
“We would like to thank Ethiopian Airlines for the patience, support and leadership shown throughout the period that the 787 Dreamliner has been grounded. We congratulate the airline on the return to commercial service of their 787 fleet. Ethiopian is a leading airline in Africa and we take pride in their achievement,” said Ray Conner, President and CEO, Boeing Commercial Airplanes.
Ethiopian is the first African and the third airline in the world to own and operate the Dreamliner. Since entry into service in August 2013, Ethiopian Dreamliners have been bringing the ultimate travel experience to passengers on Ethiopian flights.