Lebanon Closes Airspace to Boeing 737 MAX, Says Civil Aviation

15 March, 2019, 01:00 | Author: Donnie King
  • Boeing 737 MAX 8

American Airlines had roughly 85 flights a day on the Boeing Max 8 and Max 9 jets.

Garuda joins Indonesian private carrier Lion Air and a number of global airlines in weighing a switch away from Boeing's Max jetliner to other aircraft after regulators around the world chose to ground Boeing's most popular model.

"After reviewing the latest development, especially the increasing customer concerns toward Max 8, we have lost the confidence in the product", Danadiputra said.

The United States has said there is "no basis" to ground Boeing 737 MAX airliners, after a second deadly crash involving the model in less than five months prompted governments worldwide to ban the plane.

Air Canada has 24 Max 8 aircraft (out of 184 in its main fleet), which it uses mainly for domestic and US routes, while Calgary-based WestJet Airlines Ltd. has 13 Max 8s (out of about 150 planes).

The concerns stem from a pair of deadly crashes in Ethiopia and Indonesia over recent months that have killed almost 350 combined people, including 18 Canadians.




Investigators looking into the Indonesian crash are examining whether the software automatically pushed the plane's nose down repeatedly, and whether the Lion Air pilots knew how to solve that problem by throwing toggle switches and cancelling the automated nose-down commands. In total, there were at least 11 reports about the Boeing 737 MAX 8 logged on the Aviation Safety Reporting System between April 2018 and December 2018.

Despite the aviation giant's assurances that the plane is safe and reliable, the European Union, Britain and India joined China and other countries grounding the plane or banning it from their airspace as they await the results of the investigation into the crash.

"We make our own decisions in Canada and occasionally those decisions may be different from our colleagues south of the border", Garneau said. The similarity is a warning sign for him and his agency, he said.

In Addis Ababa, about 200 angry family members of crash victims left a briefing with Ethiopian Airlines officials, saying that the carrier has not given them adequate information.

"The Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority, whose mandate it is to issue advisory, has already issued advisory that nobody should fly into Nigeria or out of Nigeria using Boeing 737 Max 8 and Max 9, pending the determination of the actual cause of the crash in Ethiopia and also pending the outcome of the response of the manufacturer, which is Boeing". He previously worked with the Transportation Safety Board of Canada. He said pilots have been given additional training and flight procedures on what they have to do if a similar situation occured. In a dramatic development, the European Aviation Safety Agency has split with the Federal Aviation Administration in banning the Max, leaving the USA regulator isolated in insisting that it's still safe to fly.

Garneau told reporters he informed Canada's airlines Wednesday morning of his decision, and there was no push back from the air carriers.

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