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June 15, 2024
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The British Aircraft Accident Investigation Board issued its preliminary findings (S5-2013 ET-AOP) on the Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 787 fire at London Heathrow airport, and cites the Honeywell Emergency Locator Transmitter as the likely cause.

The report indicates that the most damaged area “coincides with the location of the aircraft’s Emergency Locator Transmitter and its associated system wiring which is mounted internally on structure close to the aircraft skin. ┬áThere are no other aircraft systems in this vicinity which, with the aircraft unpowered, contain stored energy capable of initiating a fire in the area of heat damage.”

The report makes two recommendations – “that the FAA initiate action for making inert the Honeywell International RESCY406AFN fixed Emergency Locator Transmitter system in Boeing 787 aircraft until appropriate airworthiness actions can be completed.”, and that the FAA, in association with other airworthiness authorities, conduct a safety review of Lithium-powered ELT systems in other aircraft types in addition to the 787.

4 thoughts on “Preliminary AAIB Report on Ethiopian 787 Fire Points to ELT

  1. So, now we pull them and eliminate a possible problem with zero loss (should have been eliminated already as they are so wasted costing a lot to accommodate and less than zero return).. for all the fingers at Boeing with the LI Iion battery they then allow this stuff with no oversight (and for something that serves no purpose, the finger points both ways.

    Only General Aviation aircraft that do not have a method to located should have them and those need to be looked at in case this ie not a one off.

    Dumping them eliminates a problem and what would you fight than fire with in flight? Leta lone get at it?

    FAA needs to get their butt in gear. There should have been a short grounding until they id the problem and then acted immediately with a progressive AD for large planes and a provisional ones for the GA aircraft.

  2. Everybody is waiting for the next incident.. sad. At least this & the JAL return won’t influence the promoted high (Dispatch) Reliability”. The aircraft departed without delay..

  3. The FAA is still diddling with “inspections”. They can’t even tell what happened to the main batteries with them on a bench and electron scanning to the molecular level.

    Do we have to have a crash before they get those Li Iion batts off ALL large commercial aircraft? (other than the 787 main ones and those are secure and tested safe containment).

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