FAA keeps 737 MAX 8 airplanes's flying as European Union grounds them
- Author: Leroy Wright Mar 13, 2019,
Mar 13, 2019, 2:48
Pilots repeatedly voiced safety concerns about the Boeing 737 Max 8 to federal authorities, with one captain calling the flight manual "inadequate and nearly criminally insufficient" several months before Sunday's Ethiopian Air crash that killed 157 people, an investigation by The Dallas Morning News found.
Preliminary reports following the Lion Air MAX 8 crash - the newest version of Boeing's single-aisle, narrow body aircraft - found the pilots struggled to control the plane.
This photo shows a Boeing 737 Max 8 type aircraft at William P. Hobby Airport in Houston on Monday, March 11, 2019. The latest incident follows another deadly accident in Indonesia last October, when 189 people were killed in a Lion Air flight crash.
Following the crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302, so far the facts don't support grounding the aircraft, says John Goglia, former NTSB investigator.
Southwest Airlines is offering passengers scheduled to fly on one of the Boeing planes the chance to change their bookings.
Boeing said it stands by the plane.
The plane ploughed into a field some 60 kilometres east of Addis Ababa - just six minutes after taking off.
Dennis Muilenbur, Boeing's CEO said on Sunday they are providing "technical assistance" to the Ethiopian government and regulatory authorities to help with the investigation. The plane, in British Airways colours, started flying South African routes last week and was still in the air on Monday from Cape Town to Johannesburg.
It said: "If we identify an issue that affects safety, the FAA will take immediate and appropriate action".
Since the airspace ban, at least two 737 MAX 8s bound for the United Kingdom have been forced to turn around mid-air.