Rolls-Royce provided this update on the engine issues:
At our 2017 Full Year results on 7 March 2018 we outlined our management of certain Trent 1000 engine in-service issues and the estimated costs relating to our implementation of the solutions to address those issues.
As part of our ongoing inspection and testing of those engines we have decided to carry out additional engine inspections to those previously planned. The increased inspection frequency is driven by our further understanding of the durability of the Trent 1000 Package C compressor, a condition that we highlighted earlier this year. These inspections will be supported by service management and flight operations guidance to airlines to be issued by the airworthiness authorities.
This will unfortunately lead to additional disruption for our customers. There are 380 Package C engines currently in-service with airlines. This new regime does not impact Trent 1000 Package B engines or Trent 1000 TEN engines.
While the compressor technical issue was known at the time of our results, the requirement for more regular inspections will lead to higher than previously guided cash costs being incurred during 2018. We are reprioritising various items of discretionary spend to mitigate these incremental cash costs and our guidance for 2018 FCF remains unchanged at Group FCF for 2018 of around £450m +/- £100m.
Warren East, CEO, Rolls-Royce, said: “Our focus is on supporting our customers and doing all we can to minimise any impact on their operations. We sincerely regret the disruption this will cause to our customers and our team of technical experts and service engineers is working around the clock to ensure we return them to full service as soon as possible. We will be working closely with Boeing and affected airlines to minimise disruption wherever possible.”
Copyright Photo: Robbie Shaw. One of LATAM Airlines’ (Chile) Boeing 787-8 is in storage at Victorville due to the engine problems.
As a result, Boeing issued this follow-up statement:
We are aware that Rolls-Royce made a financial disclosure today in connection with increased inspections of the Trent 1000 Package C engine.
About 25 percent of the 787 Dreamliner fleet is powered by this Rolls-Royce engine variant. This issue does not affect current production 787s, the Trent 1000 Package B, Trent 1000 TEN or GEnx-1B engines.
An existing EASA Airworthiness Directive for the Package C engine requires inspections of an intermediate pressure compressor blade at certain flight cycles. If a durability issue is found, the blade will be replaced. This is a known issue and we will continue to work with Rolls-Royce, our customers and the regulators to fully resolve it. Boeing is deploying support teams to mitigate service disruption.
Safety is our highest priority. The 787 has safely flown more than 3.2 billion miles since entering commercial service in 2011.