FAA tells Boeing to fix 747-8 software to avoid crash
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration on Tuesday ordered an immediate fix to the latest version of Boeing Co's (BA.N: Quote) 747-8 plane, saying a software glitch could cause it to lose thrust when close to landing and fly into the ground.
The FAA's so-called airworthiness directive covers Boeing's 747-8 and 747-8F planes with certain General Electric Co (GE.N: Quote) engines. It calls for replacing defective software with a new, improved version.
The rule, the fourth such directive involving the 747-8, directly affects seven airplanes in the United States, the FAA said.
If adopted internationally, the rule would cover a larger number. Boeing's website said it had delivered 66 of the four-engine jets, the company's largest, to customers worldwide since the model was introduced in October 2011.
The problem never caused a problem in flight, Boeing said.
Because of the seriousness of the safety issues, the directive takes effect April 9, skipping the usual comment period, although comments can still be submitted, the FAA said.
Boeing said data analysis indicated a potential problem, and it advised customers last year to update the software. It said it believed the majority of operators had already done so.
The risk of failure was "extremely remote," Boeing said.
GE said it owned the software and jointly analyzed it with Boeing, but plane maker decided to recommend the software change to customers. Continued...