United grounds 777s and cancels flights for functional check

United Airlines informed customers traveling on April 2, 2008 on United’s Boeing 777 aircraft that they will experience flight delays or cancellations as a result of a functional check being performed on the aircraft. As part of a regular review of maintenance records, the company discovered that the functional test that checks the firing system on one of the five bottles in the cargo fire suppression system on the Boeing 777 was not performed, and this was voluntarily disclosed to the FAA. United is in the process of checking this part of the system. This system is regularly tested as part of the pre-flight safety checks.

These checks are related to compliance. United will not operate these aircraft until the tests are complete. United will conduct the check on all 52 Boeing 777 aircraft in the company’s fleet.

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