To prepare for the delivery of our first 787 Dreamliner, we set up our Houston hub with a full-flight simulator that we used in training 70 pilots how to operate the aircraft. More than 7,000 flight attendants have already received extensive 787 systems and operations training and are qualified to fly on the aircraft. We will continue to train pilots, flight attendants and mechanics through the end of the year.
In addition, our Houston maintenance base houses more than 1,180 different 787 parts, which our technicians can access quickly and easily.
“Although United’s 787 simulator is very realistic, there’s simply no substitute for being able to fly the real aircraft,” said Captain Dave Lundy, our 787 Fleet Standards Manager. After completing the comprehensive ground and simulator-based 787 training program, our 787 pilots recently flew the real aircraft over the course of four days in Seattle. Most of the training flights were conducted at Moses Lake Airport in Washington State. Its long runways and lack of air traffic congestion make this airport a great training ground.
Next up in the extended process of achieving final certification for regular operations of the 787 are proving runs – flights that incorporate tests and training as required by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
With the delivery of our first 787 complete, the plan is for our pilots to fly the 787 to Houston this week. Read more about 787 induction and proving runs in our related article