American Airlines managers to join crews on 737 Max before passengers

Clay Curtis
June 14, 2019

It's not possible to give an exact date as work progresses on safety fixes to the aircraft, Ali Bahrami, the Federal Aviation Administration's associate administrator for aviation safety, said in an interview Wednesday at a conference in Cologne, Germany.

Knowing when the plane could fly again would help airlines to cope with the disruption caused by the mid-range aircraft 737 Max, the most popular model of Boeing.

Boeing is working to submit a modified version of the aircraft's software and hopes to get the approval of the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and its counterparts throughout the world.

- American Airlines plans to continue canceling flights scheduled on Boeing 737 MAX jets through September 3.

The crash was the second involving Boeing 737 MAX 8 within five months after a Lion Air plane crashed in Indonesia in October 2018.

Public uncertainty around the 737 Max's return comes as Boeing faces mounting pressure from lawsuits and investigations related to the aircraft, as well as potential issues with the wings of both 737 Max and 737 Next Generation planes.

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The United States kicked off a tariff battle with China in 2018, seeking sweeping structural changes from Beijing. The White House didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

Speaking on CNBC on Wednesday, Delta Air Lines CEO Ed Bastian said he believed consumer confidence would take a while to restore, and that a MAX return to service was "probably going to be longer than anyone would like it to be".

Neither Boeing nor the Federal Aviation Administration has given a clear, public indication of when the 737 Max will receive approval to resume making commercial flights in the U.S.

Hailu said the airline will only fly the aircraft after it had been certified and flown by American and European airlines, adding that Boeing would have to also train its pilots on the technicalities of the aircraft.

Boeing fell.66 percent to $347.03.

The Max 737, described as the most environmentally friendly and fuel efficient in the family of the Boeing 737, was grounded following the Ethiopian Airline's crash from Addis Ababa to Nairobi, Kenya in April.

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