Boeing plane fire closes Heathrow Airport runways

Boeing plane fire closes Heathrow Airport runways

Credit: NBC

An Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 787 caught fire at Heathrow Airport in London, July 12, 2013.

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by Associated Press

NWCN.com

Posted on July 12, 2013 at 10:15 AM

LONDON --  A fire on an empty Boeing 787 Dreamliner plane forced Heathrow Airport to close both its runways Friday, suspending all arrivals and departures.

The airport said in a tweet that there were no passengers aboard the Ethiopian Airlines plane, and British police said the fire is being treated as unexplained. London's fire department said its firefighters were on standby to assist Heathrow's crews.

Boeing said in a tweet that they are aware of the fire and have personnel working to understand and address the incident.

Television images showed nearly a dozen fire trucks on the scene and firefighters standing around the Ethiopian Airlines plane, which was parked on a remote stand.

Fire-retardant foam appeared to have been sprayed, but no damage to the plane was immediately apparent.

The incident is likely to heap more pressure on Boeing Co., which makes the Dreamliner.

The Dreamliner was grounded for three months earlier this year amid concerns about overheating lithium-ion batteries. Shares in Boeing have fallen more than 1.3 percent on the news.

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