Lion Air suspends delivery of Boeing Max jets after Africa crash

Elias Hubbard
March 13, 2019

There are now over 370 Boeing 737 MAXs in operation, with 47 airlines.

The latest disaster is the second in less than six months involving the Boeing 737 MAX 8, raising questions about its safety.

The first MAX 8 was handed over to Malindo Air (a subsidiary of Lion Air) on May 16, 2017 and entered service on May 22.

The Trinidad-headquartered worldwide carrier said it "currently uses Boeing 737-800 Next Generation aircraft" and made it clear that "Caribbean Airlines now does not have the Boeing MAX 8 aircraft as part of its fleet".

After the headline news, authorities in China, Indonesia and Ethiopian Airlines have announced to ground the 737 Max 8 aircraft.

On 29 October, a Lion Air-operated Boeing 737 MAX 8 crashed into the Java Sea after take-off from Jakarta, killing 189 people.

"Following the tragic accident of ET 302..." In the United States, American and Southwest fly the 737 Max 8 and each have more on order.

Comair has chose to remove its 737 MAX from its flight schedule. The company said it doesn't operate the Max 8 but it does have more than a dozen of the larger Max 9 version of the 737. "We will look for an opportunity to mark the new plane with the world in the near future", the company said.

The US Federal Aviation Administration said it would take "immediate" action if there were safety concerns. Southwest had 34 Boeing 737 Max 8 jets in its fleet of over 750 as of December 31, 2018 and remains "confident in the safety and airworthiness" of its aircraft, the carrier said in a statement on Monday.

China, Ethiopia and the Cayman Islands are some of the countries that have temporarily stopped operating the Max 8.

The CEO of Turkish Airlines, which flies 11 Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft, said in a tweet that the carrier would fly the planes as scheduled, adding the airline is in touch with Boeing and that passenger security was paramount. In the meantime, the planes remained in the air.

This could change depending on the outcome of an ongoing probe but "for now, there is no reason to fear these machines".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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