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Boeing defends 787 after three recent mechanical issues

A line of Boeing 787 jets sit on the floor nearing completion at the company's production plant in Everett. (AP File Photo)

Boeing says the 787 in a flight cut short for a mechanical problem has already returned to service.

“The 787 is a great airplane and has been performing on par with the 777’s entry into service,” Boeing spokesperson Doug Alder said in a news release.

It’s the third time in the past week that a flight involving Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner was abbreviated for a mechanical reason.

A United Airlines spokeswoman said Monday that Flight 94, a Houston flight bound for Denver, returned to Houston shortly after takeoff on Sunday because of “a brake indicator issue.”

On Thursday, a United Airlines Boeing 787 flying from London to Houston was diverted to Newark, N.J., because of a low engine oil indicator. And on Tuesday, a United plane heading to Tokyo from Denver was diverted to Seattle because of what the airline described as an oil filter issue.

“The 787 is a great airplane and has been performing on par with the 777’s entry into service. We know it will continue to receive heightened attention when reliability events occur in service,” said Alder.

The 787 Dreamliner is under scrutiny after it was grounded worldwide for three months after lithium-ion batteries overheated on two of the jets.

The cause of the overheating was not determined, but the Federal Aviation Administration approved 787s to fly again after Boeing made changes to the lithium-ion battery system.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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