Boeing 737 MAX 8 Grounded in India: 12 Key Highlights

Many countries grounded the aircraft after the Ethiopian Airlines crash that killed all 157 people onboard.

3 min read
The Boeing 737 Max 8. 

A number of countries, including India, has banned Boeing 737 MAX 8 medium-haul workhorse jet from their airspace in the light of the Ethiopian Airlines crash on Sunday, 10 March, which killed all 157 people on board. On Wednesday, 13 March, Boeing also issued a statement saying that it had decided to recommend grounding of the aircraft to the US aviation authority out of “an abundance of caution.”

Here are the key highlights:

Follow the live updates on the action taken against Boeing 737 MAX 8 after Ethiopian airlines crash here.

  1. After an emergency meeting between Civil Aviation and a group of airlines, Civil Aviation Secretary PS Kharola said all Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft being operated by Indian airlines have been grounded.
  2. Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) chief BS Bhullar said lifting the ban on the aircraft will be based on inputs from various agencies and it will not happen soon.
  3. Kharola said SpiceJet will adjust most passengers in its own flights. If the need arises, other operators will pitch in.
  4. In a statement on Wednesday, SpiceJet said, "SpiceJet has suspended Boeing 737 MAX operations following DGCA's decision to ground the aircraft." The statement added, "Safety and security of our passengers, crew and operations are of utmost importance to us and we will be working with the regulator and the manufacturer to attain normalcy in our operations.
  5. US President Donald Trump on Wednesday, 13 March announced that the country would be grounding all Boeing 737 MAX aircraft after immense political and international pressure. "We're going to be issuing an emergency order of prohibition regarding all flights of the 737 MAX 8 and 737 MAX 9,” Trump told reporters, reported AFP. The aviation watchdog of the US, the FAA, was facing criticism for maintaining its confidence in the aircraft despite numerous countries grounding the jetliner.
  6. Following Trump’s announcement, Boeing issued a statement, saying that while they maintained confidence in the aircraft, they had decided to recommend grounding 737 MAXs to the FAA “out of an abundance of caution and in order to reassure the flying public of the aircraft’s safety”.
  7. Ethiopia said on Wednesday, that it would send the black boxes from last weekend's deadly Ethiopian Airlines crash to Europe for analysis as urgency mounted for answers amid safety concerns for the Boeing 737 MAX 8.
  8. In Ethiopia, families of victims, on 13 March, were taken to the remote site where the plane smashed into a field with 157 passengers and crew from 35 countries, leaving a deep black crater and tiny scraps of debris.
  9. Over 40 countries which have either grounded or banned the 737 MAX. Some of them are: Australia, China, India, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Egypt, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, United Arab Emirates – including major hub Dubai, Namibia, all European Union countries and Serbia.
  10. Some aviation authorities which have banned flights of 737 MAX jets are: Aerolineas Argentinas Aeromexico, Cayman Airways, Comair (South Africa), Eastar Jet (South Korea), Ethiopian Airlines, Gol Airlines (Brazil), Icelandair, MIAT Mongolian Airlines, Norwegian Air Shuttle and S7 (Russia).
  11. Many other airlines are continuing to fly the plane pending an investigation into the crash and possible guidance from Boeing itself. More than 370 of the 737 MAX 8s are in service around the world, with nearly 5,000 on order.
  12. The Nairobi-bound plane was the same type as the Indonesian Lion Air jet that crashed in October, killing 189 passengers and crew – and some officials have detected similarities between the two accidents.

(With inputs from AFP, AP, ANI and PTI.)

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