Dec 2nd, 2020

Boeing 737 Max to Fly Again

Posted in Aviation News

The Boeing 737 Max will soon fly again.  Passengers should begin seeing the aircraft return to service in the coming weeks. 

The Cause

The Boeing 737 Max was grounded 20 months ago after the crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302.  The African airline crash occurred just months after the crash of Lion Air Flight 610 in the Far East.

The Grounding

President Donald Trump ordered the grounding of the aircraft after most nations of the world had done so.  In the interim Boeing spent millions of dollars and multiple hours of trouble shooting to develop a satisfactory solution.  The target of interest is what is known as the MCAS system

The Process

Before the aircraft return to service, each airline must revise their current 737 Max pilot training program.  Additionally, the Max that have been parked (often in the desert) must follow maintenance steps to return to the air.  More details can be found at the FAA.

Two Caveats

When airlines book you on a flight that includes the Max, you have the option to request another plane.  If so, the airline will reroute you on a non 737 Max aircraft.  Let me recommend that you stay with the Max.  Right now, I would wager that the 737 Max will be the safest aircraft in the world over the next year or two. 

It reminds me of the fast food restaurant Jack in the Box.  Back in the late 1990s, they had a food poisoning episode with bad burgers.  It made major headlines.  I made it a point to visit Jack in the Box in the weeks following the news story.  It seemed to me that Jack in the Box would be hyper vigilant when it came to the food being served.  I figured there would never be a safer time to eat there.  The same will likely hold true for the 737 Max.

Finally, in a PR move, airlines have decided to remove the Words 737 Max from all aircraft.  They state it is “to make the aircraft more uniform” (right).  So, don’t look for the words, but do look for the jet in the coming months.

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