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Japan Airlines Cancels Next Week’s San Diego-Tokyo Flights

Technical problems with their Boeing 787 aircraft have caused Japan Airlines to cancel even more of its direct flights from San Diego to Tokyo. Earlier this week, JAL cancelled the round-trip flights through this Friday. Now they say the flights to Tokyo will also be cancelled at least through next Friday, Jan. 25.

Aired 1/21/13 on KPBS News.

Technical problems with their Boeing 787 aircraft have caused Japan Airlines to cancel even more of its direct flights from San Diego to Tokyo.

A Japan Airlines Boeing 787 Dreamliner jet aircraft is surrounded by emergency vehicles at Logan International Airport in Boston on Monday. JAL has temporarily canceled its Dreamliner flights from San Diego to Tokyo.

Technical problems have lately bedeviled the new, innovative aircraft. Most notably, batteries on two 787s caught on fire. Yesterday, the Federal Aviation Administration grounded all 787s operated by U.S. airlines. JAL’s grounding of its planes was done voluntarily.

The 787 is called the “Dreamliner” and it has been praised for its streamlined design and fuel efficiency. The Dreamliner has made it possible to fly direct from San Diego to the Far East, despite Lindbergh Field’s challenging geography and short runway.

Late last year, JAL debuted its non-stop service from San Diego to Tokyo to the delight of local business and tourism leaders, who believe the flights can enhance the region’s economy.

A spokesman for JAL said San Diegans who planned to fly to Tokyo would be routed through other airports for the time being. The airline estimated the flight cancellations would affect 1,290 passengers.

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