As everyone interested knows, the first flight of the Boeing 787 was a success. The flight time was cut short by nearly two hours due to deteriorating weather conditions at Boeing Field, the flight’s terminus. The airplane went over the Strait of Juan de Fuca, the body of water between Washington State and Canada, rather than Eastern Washington.
The flight climbed, descended and turned more than planned looking for clear skies. Winds aloft between 15,000 and 19,000 ft–the height of the 777 first flight in 1994–were between 50-70 knots. Boeing had not indicated the altitude when the 787 pilots decided to return early, and we didn’t see the following press conference to learn if the 787 encountered these winds on the first flight.
There will be plenty of Google News-accessible coverage, and our own story is one of our pontificating on Q13 Fox and KIRO-TV, so we won’t go into either for purposes of this column.
For Boeing: congratulations.