It seemed as though Boeing 787 Dreamliner deliveries had resumed, with ANA today taking a new Boeing 787-9 that had been in storage at Victorville in the Mojave Desert. However, Boeing revealed that this aircraft had already been delivered previously. So far in 2021, Boeing has delivered just 14 Dreamliner aircraft in the past 12 months, all between March and June.
Boeing has had a tough time over the past few years. The entire 737 MAX program was grounded from March 2019 to late 2020 following two fatal accidents with the type. While the MAX is now back in the skies, Boeing has another problem in the form of the 787 Dreamliner. While the type hasn’t been grounded like the MAX, deliveries have been practically non-existent for the past year.
ANA takes another Boeing 787
Yesterday, a new ANA 787-9 flying from Victorville in California to Tokyo’s Haneda Airport overnight. According to flight data from RadarBox.com, the plane took off from Victorville at 14:50 yesterday. The aircraft arrived in Tokyo at 18:40.
RadarBox.com doesn’t list the aircraft registration, though it does list its transponder code as 87339A, which matches up to a record for the aircraft from Planespotters.net. According to the website, the aircraft delivered is JA936A.
The plane first flew on April 8th, making it half a year old. Boe Family reports that the jet was sent to storage in Victorville on April 20th, shortly after its third flight. The aircraft underwent a taxi and rejected takeoff test at Victorville on September 3rd, followed by a test flight five days later.
Meanwhile, Boeing told Simple Flying that the aircraft has been previously delivered to ANA on paper, and that it wasn’t a new aircraft delivery. In a statement to Simple Flying, a spokesperson said,
“We are also continuing to complete comprehensive inspections across the 787 production system and within the supply chain, while holding detailed, transparent discussions with the FAA, suppliers and our customers. Production resources remain focused on inspections and rework and the 787 production rate remains lower than five airplanes per month.
“We will continue to take the time needed to ensure the highest levels of quality. While these efforts continue to impact deliveries, we’re confident this is the right approach to drive stability and first-time quality across our operations and to position the program for the long term as market demand recovers.”
What does this mean for Boeing?
It’s unclear when full-scale deliveries will resume across the 787 Dreamliner program or if it may be a one-off delivery on the way to getting things back to normal. Simple Flying has reached out to Boeing and ANA for comment.
In early September, Simple Flying reported that deliveries of the 787 Dreamliner may not resume until late October. At the time, a Boeing spokesperson told Simple Flying,
“Boeing is committed to providing full transparency to our regulators and working with the FAA through the rigorous process to resume 787 deliveries. We have engaged with the FAA on this issue in meetings and working sessions over hundreds of hours and will continue to do so.”
The delivery delays had been prompted as Boeing and the FAA worked together to rectify production issues identified with the jets. So far, it seems that no significant action has affected the in-service fleet.
The delivery seems to roughly coincide with when deliveries of the 787 were first paused. According to data from ch-aviation.com, the last Dreamliner delivered before the first pause was Etihad’s A6-BMI. The former 787-10 ecoDemonstrator was delivered by Boeing on October 14th, 2020.
The following new Boeing 787 Dreamliner wasn’t delivered until March 26th, with United Airlines taking a 787-9. Over the following months, Boeing delivered 14 aircraft as follows,
- March – Two
- April – Nine
- May – Two
- June – One
Turkish Airlines took delivery of the aircraft in June, taking a 787-9 on the 17th.
Are you excited to see deliveries of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner resuming? Let us know what you think and why in the comments!
*** This story was updated at 13:10 UTC on October 13th, 2021 to include comments provided by Boeing ***