Airlines around the world begin to ground their Boeing 737 MAX 8 airplanes after two fatal accidents with the aircraft.
Recently all Chinese carriers were ordered to suspend the use of their Boeing 737 MAX 8 airplanes on Monday, grounding nearly 100 aircraft operated by its airlines, more than a quarter of the global fleet of the jets.
The order comes after Sunday’s deadly crash of Ethiopian Airlines flight ET302, which was carrying 149 passengers and eight crew members. Chinese state TV said eight Chinese passengers were aboard the doomed flight.
Ethiopian Airlines flight ET302 is the the second crash of the Boeing 737 MAX 8, the latest version of Boeing’s workhorse narrowbody jet that first entered service in 2017.
Last year October 2018, Lion Air flight JT610 which also was a Boeing 737 MAX 8 model, crashed into the Java Sea 13 minutes after take-off, killing all 189 passengers and crew on board. The cause the Lion Air crash is still being investigated.
The Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) said it would notify airlines when they could resume flying the Boeing 737 MAX 8 planes, after contacting Boeing and the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to ensure flight safety.
“Given that two accidents both involved newly delivered Boeing 737-8 planes and happened during take-off phase, they have some degree of similarity,” the CAAC said, adding the step was in line with its principle of zero tolerance of safety hazards.
Ethiopian Airlines said it had grounded its 737 MAX 8 fleet until further notice as an “extra safety precaution” even though it did not know the cause of Sunday’s crash.
Cayman Airways said it had grounded both of its new 737 MAX 8 jets until it got more information.
Boeing tweeted that their technical team will be travelling to the crash site of Ethiopian Airlines Flight ET302 to provide technical assistance.
— Boeing Airplanes (@BoeingAirplanes) March 10, 2019