Canada orders grounding of all Boeing 737 Max 8s over safety concerns


Members of the Democrat Party in the United States initially accused the Trump Administration of dragging its feet on grounding the Max-8 jets to protect Boeing profits - the company donated US$1 million to Trump's inauguration and Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg is a regular confidant of the President.

The United States-based aerospace company hoped its new 737 MAX 8 would bring in a new era of passenger safety.

"This evidence, together with newly refined satellite data available to the FAA this morning, led to this decision".

But the software only operates when a plane is being flown manually with its flaps retracted, according to a November 10 memo provided to Southwest Airlines pilots following the Lion Air crash.

The FAA declined to comment on the incidents that pilots reported, but said it was not aware of any verified reports of MCAS-related issues in the U.S.

With another 4,661 on order, 737 Max 8s could become the workhorses for airlines around the globe for decades.

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On Sunday an Ethiopian Airlines Max 8 crashed shortly after take-off killing all 157 on board.

CTV went to Winnipeg's airport and spoke with passengers who were on a West Jet Boeing 737 Max 8 flight from Toronto to Winnipeg. Some early-moving regulators admitted they had few specific facts suggesting the airplane was unsafe, but preferred to err on the side of caution.

Boeing sank 5.3% to US$400.01 at the close in NY, the biggest decline since 29 October, the day of the Lion Air crash.

"The pilot was fighting against the computer software, which wanted to drop the nose of the aircraft" and "eventually there was a loss of control", said Garneau, a former astronaut.

Boeing has dispatched a technical team to assist the investigation into the Ethiopian Airlines plane, which was delivered new in November to Africa's biggest carrier.

Trump said he had told American airlines about the decision as well as Boeing and all agreed with his administration's decision.

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A Norwegian spokesperson said: "We would like to apologise to customers booked to travel to NY from Edinburgh as we work to reallocate our fleet options with other aircraft types and re-route passengers in response to the suspended operations of the Boeing 737 Max by European aviation authorities".

The FAA said on Twitter the grounding was ordered "as a result of the data gathering process and new evidence collected at the site and analyzed today".

Boeing's shares fell as much as 10 percent on the prospect that two such crashes in such a short time could reveal flaws in its new plane.

Trump said the decision to ground the aircraft "didn't have to be made, but we thought it was the right decision".

Southwest likely will have more trouble. "To me it's nearly surreal how quickly some of the regulators are just grounding the aircraft without any factual information yet as a result of the investigation", he told Reuters. The company added, however, that it recommended to the FAA that all 737 Max planes be temporarily grounded around the world.

"Nor have other civil aviation authorities provided data to us that would warrant action", the FAA said in a statement Tuesday night.

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Anyone booked on a Max flight that was canceled will be able to rebook without fees or a fare difference as long as the alternate flight is within two weeks of the original date.