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Boeing 787 forced to make diversionary landing at Sea-Tac

A Boeing 787 Dreamliner was forced to make a diversionary landing at Sea-Tac International Airport Tuesday afternoon because of engine problems on a flight from Denver to Tokyo-Narita.

United Flight 139 was over the Pacific Ocean near Vancouver Island when a warning indicated a problem with an oil filter, KIRO TV first reported.

Passenger Chris Seewald posted a picture of the 787 dumping fuel on his Instagram account.

“So my United flight aboard a 787 Dreamliner from Denver to Tokyo had an engine malfunction and turned back to Seattle. So much for being in Tokyo by nightfall. At least we are safe and on there ground! Enjoy the photo of our Dreamliner dumping fuel over the Pacific…,” he wrote.

Seewald wrote United is asking passengers to stay in Seattle overnight and will be put on a 9 a.m. flight Wednesday morning.

According to Seewald, the pilot told passengers the plane was “not operating optimally.”

Airlines resumed flying 787’s last month after battery problems prompted a worldwide grounding. United began flying the 787 between Denver and Tokyo-Narita June 10.

About the Author

Josh Kerns

Josh Kerns is an award winning reporter on KIRO Radio 97.3 FM. He covers everything from May Day riots in Seattle to the latest Boeing news. Email Josh at


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