SEATTLE, Jan. 27 (UPI) -- The Boeing Co. 787 Dreamliner will be tested with some temporary and improperly installed fasteners, the U.S. aerospace giant says.
Yvonne Leach, the company's chief spokeswoman concerning the 787, told the Seattle Post-Intelligencer the temporary fastenings will be adequate for the number of takeoffs and landings involved in flight tests. She said they will have to be replaced before any planes go into service.
"The small number of fasteners that won't be replaced are not easy to reach and/or don't represent a safety of flight issue," she said in an e-mail.
The 787 has been through a series of delays. The plane was originally supposed to begin testing in May 2007 with the first deliveries in 2008, but the company's latest statement in December said testing would begin in the second quarter this year with deliveries in 2010.
Fasteners, which are made of various materials and can range from small rivets to foot-long bolts 4 inches in diameter, have been a major problem, the Post-Intelligencer said. The first planes were assembled from structures with temporary fasteners because of a shortage.