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World


Iran bans Boeing 737 MAX flights in its airspace

Tehran, Mar 15 (UNI) Iran Civil Aviation Organization (CAO) announced that the country has banned 737 Max 8 and Max 9 aircraft from flying in the country’s airspace following the second deadly crash in 5 months.
A CAO Spokesman Reza Jafarzadeh said on Friday that the regulator has issued A Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) to ban the US plane-maker Boeing Co’s 737 MAX aircraft from entering or transiting its airspace.
According to the official, the notice had been issued before Boeing Company and the US government grounded the entire global fleet of 737 Max aircraft, Iran's Fars News Agency reported.
A growing number of countries have now grounded or banned takeoffs, overflights, and landings of Boeing 737 MAX planes after a 737 MAX crashed in Ethiopia on Sunday killing 157 people.
Another disaster involving a 737 MAX in Indonesia five months ago killed 189 people.
This is the exact model (737 MAX 8) that had to have an emergency landing in an airport in Iran last December due to engine problems. Engineers managed to repair the jet after ten weeks.
It was announced on Thursday that US President Donald Trump had decided to ground all Boeing 737 Max airplanes, citing safety concerns after the fatal crash in Ethiopia.
Trump praised the airline manufacturer as a “great company” and stressed that he hoped that Boeing will come up “very quickly” with answers to what caused the crash in Ethiopia, but “until they do the planes are grounded”.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is expected to make a formal announcement, with possibly additional details about the Ethiopia crash and the length of the suspension.
Earlier in the day, Canada banned the 737 Max jets from operating in its airspace, leaving the US as the sole holdout. China led the way in grounding the jets in the wake of the Ethiopian Airlines crash, with the EU following suit, followed by a number of airlines across the world. By Wednesday morning, only the US and Canada were still allowing the 737 Max models to fly.
The White House’s reluctance to ground the jets was understandable, given that Boeing is one of the largest passenger jet manufacturers in the world and a major military contractor. However, it appears the risk of another fatal crash overrode financial and political concerns.
The 737 MAX series was introduced in 2016 as the fourth-generation update to the narrow-body airliner that first flew in 1967.
Sunday’s Ethiopian Airlines crash left 157 people dead, and followed another crash involving the same airplane model just a few months earlier in Indonesia which killed 189. While the crashes raised widespread concerns about the aircraft’s autopilot function, Boeing has repeatedly stated that the vessel is safe and airworthy.
UNI XC KPV 1922
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