Japan asks European aviation agency to ensure safety of Rolls-Royce 787 engines

September 2, 2016 3:58 AM EDT

Employees of All Nippon Airways (ANA) queue in front of the company's Boeing 787 Dreamliner plane after its test flight at Haneda airport in Tokyo April 28, 2013. REUTERS/Yuya Shino/File Photo


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TOKYO (Reuters) - Japan has asked the European Aviation Safety Agency to ensure a problem with Rolls-Royce (NYSE: RR) engines powering Boeing (NYSE: BA) 787 Dreamliners does not repeat to cause flight disruptions or affect safety.

Japan's Ministry of Land Infrastructure Transport and Tourism said on Friday it issued the request after ANA Holdings <9202.T>, Japan's biggest carrier, canceled 18 flights last month to repair corroded turbine blades in the Rolls-Royce engines on some its Dreamliner fleet.

Officials at the EASA were not immediately available for comment.

Since February, three ANA flights have experienced engine trouble, once on a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Tokyo, a second time in March on a jet traveling to Vietnam and most recently on a domestic route in August.

The biggest operator of the carbon composite jet on Tuesday said it would replace the faulty turbine blades in all 100 engines on its 50 aircraft, an operation that could take as long as three years to complete.

Of around 450 Dreamliners in operation worldwide, two fifths use the Rolls-Royce engines. Carriers can choose either the Rolls-Royce engines or General Electric Co's (NYSE: GE) GEnx engines for their Dreamliners.

(Reporting by Maki Shiraki in TOKYO and Tim Hepher in PARIS; Writing by Tim Kelly; Editing by Joseph Radford)



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