Boeing issues 737 Max 9 inspection guidelines, a key step to resume flights

The fuselage plug area of ​​the Alaska Airlines Flight 1282 Boeing 737-9 MAX, which was forced to make an emergency landing with a gap in the fuselage, is seen during an investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) in Portland, Oregon. , USA on January 7, 2024.

NTSB | Via Reuters

Boeing has given airlines instructions on how to inspect their 737 Max 9 jets, a move to end the grounding of planes, according to an internal report from company management.

The Federal Aviation Administration ordered airlines to ground dozens of jets over the weekend, less than a day after Alaska Airlines flight at 16,000 feet.

No one was seriously injured in the accident during Alaska Airlines Flight 1282, which was bound for Ontario, California, when a door stopper broke, forcing it to return to Portland, Oregon, minutes into the flight.

It was not immediately clear how long the checks would last.

“Our teams have been working diligently — with close FAA review — to provide operators with comprehensive technical guidance for the required inspections. This morning, our team issued guidance via a multi-operator message,” said Boeing’s president and CEO of Commercial Aircraft. Stan Deal and his chief aviation safety officer and senior vice president of global aviation safety Mike Delaney in an internal memo.

There are more than 200 737 Max 9 aircraft in fleets worldwide. United Airlines has a fleet of 79 737 Max 9s and Alaska Airlines has 65. The rest are spread among other airlines.

“The FAA’s priority is always to keep Americans safe,” the agency said in a statement Monday. “In that spirit, Boeing 737-9 aircraft will remain grounded until operators complete expanded inspections that include both left and right cabin door stoppers, door components and fasteners. Operators must also comply with corrective action requirements based on findings from pre-introduction inspections of any aircraft back to work.”

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