EU regulator clears Boeing Max jets for return to flights
The European Union has cleared the Boeing 737 Max for a return to flights in Europe following a nearly two-year ban.
The European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) said on Wednesday that it approved a modified version of the jet, mandating a package of software upgrades, electrical work, operations manual updates and crew training.
“We have every confidence that the aircraft is safe, which is the precondition for giving our approval,” EASA Executive Director Patrick Ky said in a statement.
“But we will continue to monitor 737 MAX operations closely as the aircraft resumes service. In parallel, and at our insistence, Boeing has also committed to work to enhance the aircraft still further in the medium term, in order to reach an even higher level of safety.”
The Boeing 737 Max was grounded in March 2019 after crashes in Indonesia and Ethiopia killed a combined 346 people. The accidents were both attributed to software that was intended to make the plane easier to handle.
Changes to the plane include software updates to the flight control computer and the software. The agency is also mandating training for pilots before they fly the plane.
The EASA decision comes a couple months after the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration cleared the plane for flight. Canada and Brazil have also returned the plane for service.