Thursday,  December 3, 2020  5:24 am

Boeing 737 MAX cleared to fly in U.S.; Canada keeps aircraft grounded for now


Boeing 737 MAX cleared to fly in U.S.; Canada keeps aircraft grounded for now
Michael Pihach

Michael Pihach is an award-winning journalist with a keen interest in digital storytelling. In addition to PAX, Michael has also written for CBC Life, Ryerson University Magazine, IN Magazine, and DailyXtra.ca. Michael joins PAX after years of working at popular Canadian television shows, such as Steven and Chris, The Goods and The Marilyn Denis Show.

Safety regulators in the United States have decided to give the Boeing 737 MAX the green light to fly again once the company makes changes to its software and wiring systems on each plane and provides simulator training to pilots.

The announcement marks a key milestone for the controversial aircraft, which was grounded in March 2019 after two deadly crashes that killed 346 people, including 18 Canadians.

The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said the clearance would not allow the 737 MAX to "return immediately" to flying due to the changes and training that must happen first.

Canada, however, will not be following in the footsteps of the United States.

READ MORE: Boeing 737 MAX - Transport Canada completes flight tests, but restrictions remain

Minister of Transport Marc Garneau said in a statement on Wednesday (Nov. 18) that “there will be differences between what the FAA has approved today, and what Canada will require for its operators.”

The differences will include additional procedures on the flight deck and pre-flight, as well as differences in training, said Minister Garneau.

To that end, Canada’s ban on the Boeing 737 MAX aircraft will remain in effect.

"The commercial flight restrictions for the operation of the Boeing 737 MAX aircraft in Canadian airspace remain in effect and will not be lifted until the department is fully satisfied that all its safety concerns have been addressed, and that enhanced flight crew procedures and training are in place in Canada,” stated Garneau.

Garneau said Transport Canada’s safety experts will continue an independent validation process to determine whether to approve the proposed changes to the aircraft.

The Minister said he expects this process to conclude “very soon.”

"Our government remains committed to keeping Canadians, the travelling public, and the transportation system safe and secure,” said Garneau.


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