LONDON – Thai Airways has voiced some concerns over the reputation damage that the Boeing 787 Dreamliner’s engine woes will have after numerous carriers have had to ground its planes because of the faulty powerplants.

Thai Airways (TG) currently has four of its eight 787s grounded waiting for new parts for the Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engines.

In an Interview with FlightGlobal, Krittaphon Chantalitanon, the vice president of alliances and commercial strategy at TG said, “We have to do a lot of schedule changing. There have been some delays and we will extend the phasing out period of certain types of aircraft, namely the 747-400 and possibly earlier versions of the 777, the -200s and non-ER -300s.”

He continued to mention that the airline is currently in talks with Rolls-Royce for compensation, however, he feels that even this will not be enough to “convince passengers these planes are safe.”

“Compensation is one thing, but the impact, to be polite, to the brand, for customer satisfaction, and everything that comes with it, is relative to the compensation,” he declared.

PHOTO: contri.

“I’m more concerned with the impact to the brand and everything else rather than the ultimate financial figures.”

Thai Airways are not the only airline that has been hit hard by the force of having to ground its Dreamliners.

Japanese Carrier ANA has had to cancel hundreds of flights and even pull out of some services due to the issues of the engines overheating.

The problem, which has been identified by Rolls-Royce, is the intermediate-pressure turbine and IP compressor blades, which are showing signs of  wear and tear after short flights.

It is unclear how Rolls-Royce will react to help Thai Airways, however, when ANA was forced to ground its fleet, the engine manufacturer did set up a support center for the airline at its home base, and provided them with the parts and services they needed to keep the planes in service.

Thai Airways currently has eight Dreamliners—six 787-8s and two 787-9s. The airline is also operating a fleet of 12 Airbus A350 aircraft, which could become a more viable option for the airline going forward if there is no confirmed end in sight for these engine issues.

Chantalitanon added that “Rolls-Royce has been very accommodating for a lot of the issues, but the matter remains unresolved. At the moment we have four 787-8s grounded, which comprise 50% of our Dreamliner fleet.”

PHOTO: The National.

“We are working together with Rolls-Royce to resolve this issue as quickly as possible, but you never know if [aircraft five will be grounded].”

There has been no response from Rolls-Royce on this but it is clear that the issues caused by the engines have left many airlines feeling frustrated and looking for compensation.