US Grounds Boeing 737 Max 9 Planes After Alaska Airlines Mid-Air Blowout

Authorities in the United States ordered the immediate grounding of Boeing 737 Max 9 jetliners for thorough inspections after another near fatal mid air blowout incident on an Alaska Airlines plane resulted in a significant breach in the fuselage.

The inspections take around eight hours per aircraft and impact around 171 airplanes globally, according to reports.

he Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) informed the inspections would affect 171 planes. The FAA, said it would “order the temporary grounding of certain Boeing 737 Max 9 aircraft operated by US airlines or in US territory”.

Alaska Airlines provided an update, stating that out of their 65 Boeing 737 Max 9 aircraft, crews had already inspected the paneled-over exits during recent maintenance work on 18 planes. Those cleared for service resumed operations on Saturday. The airline expected to complete inspections on the remaining planes over the next few days.

The Max plane’s door was blown off midair

The alarming incident occurred when an Alaska Airlines jetliner suffered fuselage damage shortly after takeoff at an altitude of 4.8 kilometers above Oregon.

The pilots promptly executed an emergency landing, with all 171 passengers and six crew members safely utilising oxygen masks. Despite the harrowing experience, no serious injuries were reported, and the plane successfully returned to Portland International Airport just 20 minutes after departure.

In the East Africa region its only Tazania that operates the Boeing 737 Max planes.

Boeing Max aircraft have been dogged by catastrophe in recent years. Within a span of several months in 2018 and 2019, two Boeing Max 8 airplanes crashed, killing hundreds of passengers and crew. All Max aircraft were then grounded around the world, for nearly two years, while company engineers worked to identify the problem.

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