Ethiopian Airlines Fire at Heathrow

Saturday, July 13, 2013
By George Hatcher


photographer Josh May

An Ethiopian Airlines’ Queen of Sheba, a Boeing 787 #ET-AOP which had been sitting empty for eight hours caught fire and shut down Heathrow Airport for an hour Friday. The fire seems to have started in the upper fuselage, far from the 787’s lithium-ion batteries. A battery fire would have been “contained by the new casing and…smoke would have been vented outside of the airplane.” Nearly a dozen fire trucks responded to the scene. The plane was parked on the apron taxiway E at Stand 592 next to a fire station.

#ET-AOP had arrived from Addis Ababa as flight ET700 at 06:30a.m. Departure was scheduled as ET701 to Addis Ababa at 21:10.

In photos, damage appears on the outside top of the upper fuselage near the vertical stabilizer, on the left side of the top of the airplane just in front of the tail. The fire was not caused by lithium-ion batteries, which are in in the cargo-bay.

Potential causes of the fire:

  • a gadget such as the coffeemaker
  • a manufacturing or installation defect in his jet;
  • a different systemic defect in the 787 model

NTSB Sends Investigator to Participate in Investigation of London Boeing 787 Dreamliner Fire

The National Transportation Safety Board has sent an investigator to assist in the investigation of a fire that occurred yesterday aboard a parked Boeing 787 Dreamliner at Heathrow Airport, London, England.
NTSB Senior Air Safety Investigator Lorenda Ward has been appointed as the traveling U.S. accredited representative. Ms. Ward will be accompanied by NTSB airplane systems investigators and representatives from the Federal Aviation Administration and Boeing.
The investigation is being conducted by the Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) of the United Kingdom, which will release all information.

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