Boeing to resume 737 MAX production by May

written by Sandy Milne | March 25, 2020

Boeing is attempting to restart 737 MAX production by mid-2020, according to multiple sources cited by CNBC and Al-Jazeera.

The plane was grounded in March 2019 after two separate crashes caused the deaths of 346 passengers.

This comes despite investigational setbacks, including an interim report by Ethiopian authorities released on 9 May, which laid much of the blame at Boeing’s door.

The COVID-19 outbreak has also had significant impacts on the aerospace giant, which has had to pause its operations in Seattle after numerous employees tested positive and one died.

However, one industry source said Boeing has “asked some suppliers to be ready to ship 737 parts in April”.

Another said that production was initially planned to recommence as soon as April, but that this date was pushed back to May amid news of the outbreak.

Boeing is currently seeking $60 billion in US government aid to assist with company finances and cash flow issues in the aerospace supply chain.

Speaking to Reuters on Tuesday about the May restart goal, chief financial officer Greg Smith said, “It will be a very slow, methodical, systematic approach to warming the line up, and getting crews back in place.”

“Priority number one is getting customers’ fleets back up,” he added, in an apparent reference to the backlog of 400 undelivered jets.

However, regulatory approvals have not yet been forthcoming. Despite indications from FAA officials in early February that the 737 MAX could undertake a certification flight, the authority has made no further comment.

Boeing will also have to win over international regulators, including the European Union Aviation Safety Agency.

However, the FAA and Boeing have both revealed that changes are planned to the anti-stall software (MCAS). In January, the two added that they were reviewing a wiring issue that could lead to short-circuiting in the jet’s electronic hub.

2 Comments

  • Henry

    says:

    Lets wait and see

  • Marum

    says:

    I really believe the 737 MAX is finished. It is a fine example of an upgrade to an old design air-frame which should never have been considered in the first place. The 737 – 800 was about as far as the design should have been taken. It says wonders for the original design, that it worked so well. Even then, with additional training on the upgrade, pilots would have been able to cope without the MCAS option. Plenty of aircraft pitch nose up under power, and nose down, when power settings are suddenly lowered. This inherent characteristic, does not make them dangerously unsafe.

    Obviously management did not listen to engineering. Profits were probably the prime consideration.

    As @Harry said: “Lets wait and see.”

    Regards….Marum.(Die fliegende Katze)

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