Chinese Civil Aviation Authorities have ordered airlines to stop flying Max-8’s with immediate effect and it seems almost certain other aviation authorities will do the same.
Update: Indonesia’s CAA has grounded the type, Vietnam has said it will not license the aircraft for use until this is resolved, India is planning a grounding from Tuesday, and many user airlines are trying to avoid their local CAA doing the same. The European authorities often take their lead from the FAA but they may not wait. The FAA is full of ex Boeing executives and despite its alleged neutrality, can’t be trusted to take such drastic action. US airlines are making it plain they don’t see a problem.
Many airlines will resist the call to ground everything if that comes – and many suspect it will.
Boeing has maintained a steadfast link to the Trump Administration and it’s quite possible it will lobby against the FAA grounding all aircraft in the US and advising similar action world wide.
The crash in Ethiopia is showing remarkable similarity to the Indonesia crash late last year, with FR24 showing clear evidence of a an unusual climb – the aircraft seems to want to go lower and is then guided up then down then up again before seeming to drop precipitously, and the pilot requested a return to base.
Boeing are said to have addressed the concerns relating to the sensors and procedures crew should take but it’s no guarantee it’s reached every pilot in every airline. My understanding is that a software update promised hasn’t yet been rolled out.
While we all understand speculation is not always good, the similarities are worrying – and even if the cause is different, there’s something not right with two fatal crashes in five months on a brand new airliner type.
With nearly 400 people dead its time this aircraft was grounded.