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FAA opens new probe into Boeing, this time involving 787 Dreamliner inspections

By Gregory Wallace, CNN

(CNN) — Investigators are probing whether Boeing employees failed to perform some quality inspections on its 787 jets, the Federal Aviation Administration said Monday.

The investigation is to determine whether the inspections were conducted and “whether company employees may have falsified aircraft records,” the FAA said.

While the investigation takes place, Boeing employees will inspect the Dreamliners it has not yet delivered to airline customers and will develop a plan for the planes that are currently flying, the FAA said.

The FAA said Boeing “voluntarily informed us in April that it may not have completed required inspections to confirm adequate bonding and grounding where the wings join the fuselage on certain 787 Dreamliner airplanes.”

The Boeing executive overseeing the 787 program wrote in an internal memo – shared with CNN – that the issue was reported by an employee and is an instance of “misconduct.” He said it is not “an immediate safety of flight issue.”

The memo from Scott Stocker said the company determined that “several people had been violating Company policies by not performing a required test, but recording the work as having been completed.”

“We promptly informed our regulator about what we learned and are taking swift and serious corrective action with multiple teammates,” the memo said.

Stocker said the company will “celebrate” the employee who spoke up.

In April, a Boeing engineer came forward publicly with different quality allegations about several Boeing models, including the Dreamliner. Sam Salehpour claimed shortcuts during the manufacturing process meant small gaps in the fuselage of 787s may not properly be filled.

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