WASHINGTON — Concerns about the safety of Boeing’s 737 Max 8 have continued to build after Sunday’s Ethiopian Airlines crash that killed 157 people, including some from our area.
Acting FAA Administrator Dan Elwell said late Tuesday that federal regulators will not ground the aircraft in American skies, saying a review "shows no systemic performance issues and provides no basis to order grounding the aircraft."
The United States and Canada are the only two nations where 737 Max 8’s are operated that have not grounded the planes over concerns about the aircraft’s computer-aided flight control system.
WUSA9 INVESTIGATION: Who's flying 737 MAX planes in the U.S., and where are they flying out of?
Last fall, a Lion Air 737 Max 8 crashed into the Java Sea 12 minutes after takeoff from Indonesia.
“In the course of our urgent review of data on the Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 crash, if any issues affecting the continued airworthiness of the aircraft are identified, the FAA will take immediate and appropriate action,” said Elwell. In November, regulators issued a directive to operators of the plane mandating crews be further trained in flight control problems.
President Trump tweeted Tuesday that “complexity creates danger” on commercial aircraft and that pilots should be able to “easily and quickly take over.”
Commercial air travel continues to be in going through an unprecedented stretch of safety. In 2017, there were no fatal crashes of an airline passenger jet worldwide, according to the Aviation Safety Network.
There has been only one fatality on a commercial passenger jet in the United States since 2009.