Boeing 787 Customer Says First Flight May Again Be Delayed

SEATTLE (AP) — The head of a leasing company that has ordered 74 Boeing 787s says he expects a further delay.

The chairman of International Lease Finance, Steven Udvar-Hazy, told investors at a conference in New York that he believes a design change is needed in the center wing box, a key piece that connects the wings to the fuselage.

He expects the first flight will be delayed until the fall. Boeing has said its goal is to have the first flight by the end of June. The 787 program has already been delayed three times.

A Boeing spokeswoman, Yvonne Leach, says it’s assessing the production schedule.

The 787 will be the first large commercial airplane made mostly of carbon-fiber plastic that Boeing says will save fuel and be cheaper to maintain.