Airlines operating Boeing 787 Dreamliners with certain Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engines are facing further disruption after the United Kingdom engine manufacturer called for additional inspections of a problematic part.
The aerospace and engineering giant said it had chose to carry out more checks on the 380 engines now in service with airlines from the "package C" tranche of production, the majority of the 500 in operation.
In its annual result last month Rolls-Royce flagged up an expected £300m price-tag for repairing cracking and corrosion in the turbine blades of the Trent 1000 jet, an issue first identified two years ago.
Air New Zealand worldwide passengers face more disruption from problems with some of the Rolls-Royce engines on its Dreamliners.
Not all Dreamliners are powered by Rolls-Royce engines and those using General Electric GEnx engines are also unaffected.
The engineering giant claimed that its cash flow for 2018 would be unaffected at around £450m, as it would cut non-essential spending on travel, IT upgrades and other costs to offset the financial impact.
The need to inspect and fix Trent 1000 engines has led to an industry-wide shortage.
A Rolls spokesman added that aviation safety regulators would be issuing guidance to the airlines in the coming days.
"Our team of technical experts and service engineers is working around the clock to ensure we return them to full service as soon as possible", he said.
CEO East said Rolls was working with Boeing and airlines to minimise the disruption. "We recognise that the application of these actions may cause additional disruption to our airline customers".
Virgin Atlantic said it had up to four 787s grounded at any one time while it organised replacement engines from Rolls.
A Virgin spokeswoman said it had been aware of the increased inspections and that the cover it had in place would be sufficient. The news comes after the company recently warned that the cost for fixing the issues with its Trent 1000 and Trent 900 engines would broadly double from the total cash cost in 2017 of £170 million and reach a peak this year.
An existing EASA Airworthiness Directive for the Package C engine requires inspections of an intermediate pressure compressor blade at certain flight cycles.