Boeing 737 Max Gets Thumbs Up from FAA
The Federal Aviation Administration has cleared the Boeing’s 737 Max to fly passengers again. Today’s announcement comes after a nearly two-year ban, as a result of two crashes that killed 346 people. FAA Administrator Steve Dickson said a repeat of the conditions in both crashes is now “impossible” thanks to changes in design and training protocol.
The end of the 20-month ban gives Boeing the chance to start delivering 450 Max jetliners it had produced since the ban was put in place in March of 2019. Boeing shares were up about 3% in morning trading. Boeing has another 3,000 737 Max orders waiting.
The 737 Max was grounded back in March 2019 after two 737 Max planes crashed within five months. Boeing and the FAA faced criticism from lawmakers and some air safety experts. Investigations into the crashes and the Max’s development focused on an automated flight control system that was meant to prevent the aircraft from stalling. Pilots on both flights that crashed struggled with the new system after it was activated because of faulty sensor data. A House investigation in September found regulatory, design and management problems as the jets were being developed led to the “preventable death”, CNBC reports.
Boeing has made that system less aggressive and added more redundancies to prevent the same thing from ever happening again. American Airlines is set to be the first U.S. airline to return the aircraft to commercial service at the end of December. The carrier on Wednesday said it plans to expand Max flights throughout January from its Miami hub.