BOEING’S fault-plagued 787 Dreamliner has made its first appearance in Scotland for Thomson Airways test flights at Prestwick airport ahead of the launch of services to Mexico and Florida from Glasgow next month.
The news comes days after The Scotsman revealed that Glasgow could host the world’s largest passenger aircraft, the Airbus A380, as part of future expansion by Emirates Airline to Dubai.
The Dreamliner introduction on the Thomson routes was delayed by two months after all 50 of the aircraft in service with eight airlines across the world were grounded in January following fires caused by battery faults that forced an emergency landing in Japan. They were allowed to fly again in April.
The cutting-edge planes, which are made from reinforced plastic composite rather than aluminium, boast better fuel efficiency than other aircraft, with larger windows and cabin pressure at levels more like that on the ground to reduce the effects of jet lag.
A spokesman for Prestwick airport told The Scotsman: “Thomson are coming in each day for two weeks to undertake Boeing 787 turnaround training ahead of their launch into commercial flights.
“We believe they are taking the aircraft to a number of UK and Irish airports each day as part of this.
“They chose Prestwick because it is relatively quiet and we have Scotland’s longest commercial runway.”
Thomson will start operating the Dreamliner on its routes from Glasgow to Cancun in Mexico and Orlando Sanford in Florida from 8 July.
The airline has been using other aircraft to fill the gap after Glasgow saw the most advance bookings among the three UK airports from which it will fly the aircraft.