Transportation secretary: First priority on Dreamliners is safety

NORTH CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood says no 787 Dreamliners will take to the skies again until officials are certain they're safe to fly.

"The first priority is that the planes are safe," LaHood said. "We're not going to allow planes to fly that are not safe. Until we can really tell people with definition and with one hundred percent certainty that the batteries are safe and that the planes are safe, we are going to continue our work."

As for when they'll fly again, LaHood isn't giving a timeline.

"We're not going to rush judgement. Safety is our number one priority and we want to make sure the batteries are safe," LaHood said."We have a team that's working with Boeing and also working with the NTSB and when we finish our work, we will announce to the world what we found."

The airlines have few alternatives in the long run and little choice but to wait for Boeing to fix the planes.

"We consider the safety of these planes to be our number one priority and will not take a backseat to anybody when it comes to safety and the way to do that is do it thoroughly," LaHood said.

Due to its carbon composite structure and new electrical features, the 787 promises twenty percent savings for airlines that are desperate for ways to cut their fuel bills.

Boeing's twitter account tweeted the following on Friday:

"We're encouraged with progress made toward resolving the issue and returning 787 to flight. "

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