September 10, 2019 / 1:39 PM / 9 days ago

Boeing says depressurization issue led to suspension of 777X load testing

FILE PHOTO: Several Boeing 777X aircraft are seen in various stages of production during a media tour of the Boeing 777X at the Boeing production facility in Everett, Washington, U.S., February 27, 2019. REUTERS/Lindsey Wasson/File Photo

(Reuters) - Boeing Co (BA.N) said on Tuesday suspension of final load testing of its new widebody 777X aircraft was due to an issue that involved depressurization of the rear fuselage of the plane.

The company said it was conducting a comprehensive root-cause assessment over the coming weeks, but does not expect the issue to have a significant impact on aircraft design or on the overall test program schedule.

The incident occurred during the final minutes of the test, the company said. The test, which was suspended on Saturday, involves bending the wings of the airplane to a level far beyond anything expected in commercial service. bit.ly/2k9Pquq

Media reports said on Saturday a cargo door of the 777X failed in a ground stress test.

Problems with General Electric Co (GE.N) engine had previously delayed the commercial launch of 777X widebody into 2020.

In 2012, Boeing discovered a problem related to the aft fuselage of its 787 Dreamliner planes. The planemaker found that incorrect shimming was performed on the support structure on the aft fuselage. reut.rs/2k7K4Qk

Shares of the company extended losses in premarket trade on the news, but reversed course to trade 1.5% higher at $364.47 after markets opened.

Reporting by Sanjana Shivdas in Bengaluru; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli

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