Nation Briefs

FAA to review Boeing 787, but calls plane safe

WASHINGTON – The government stepped in Friday to assure the public that Boeing’s new 787 “Dreamliner” is safe to fly, even as it launched a comprehensive review to find out what caused a fire, a fuel leak and other worrisome incidents this week.

Despite the incidents, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood declared, “I believe this plane is safe, and I would have absolutely no reservations about boarding one of these planes and taking a flight.” Administrator Michael Huerta of the Federal Aviation Administration said his agency has seen no data suggesting the plane isn’t safe but wanted the review to find out why safety-related incidents were occurring.

The 787 is the aircraft maker’s newest and most technologically advanced airliner, and the company is counting on its success. It relies more than any other airliner on electrical signals to help power nearly everything the plane does. It’s the first Boeing plane to use rechargeable lithium ion batteries, which charge faster and can be molded to space-saving shapes compared to other airplane batteries.

Californians bring out gloves, hats for cold spell

SAN DIEGO – The bright sun and clear skies were routine, but the cold was not, as Californians bundled up with sweaters and gloves and stocked up on firewood Friday to brace for several nights of freezing temperatures.

Zookeepers turned up the heat for chimpanzees in San Diego, and tourists covered their hands on Hollywood walking tours. Still, the cold snap wasn’t enough to throw many off their strides.

“We love our 75-degree weather,” said Tami Walker, 50, of Ventura. “Any time it gets cooler than that, everyone says, ‘Oh, it’s getting cooler.’ If it starts to drizzle, people call each other and say, ‘Run to the window.’”

Associated Press