An American Airlines Boeing 737 MAX aircraft takes off on a test flight from Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport in Dallas, Texas on December 2, 2020.
Cooper Neill | AFP | Getty Images
American Airlines Flight 718 is expected to depart Miami International Airport for New York’s LaGuardia Airport at 10:30 am CET.
The Fort Worth, Texas-based airline offers a round-trip flight between the two airports once a day and plans to increase service to other cities in the coming weeks. United Airlines plans to launch Max flights on February 11th from the Denver and Houston hubs. Southwest Airlines has announced that it will start flying its aircraft in the second quarter.
Brazilian airline Gol, which operates an all-Boeing 737 fleet, was the first airline to restart the jets earlier this month. More fuel efficient than previous models, the planes are at the center of plans for airlines around the world, with more than 3,000 on order.
The milestone flights come after the largest foundation in US aviation history ended just over a month ago according to the Federal Aviation Administration deleted The Max is supposed to fly again and sign some safety-relevant changes that Boeing has made to the aircraft, its bestseller.
The pilots of both crashes – Lion Air Flight 610 in Indonesia in October 2018 and Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 in Ethiopia in March 2019 – fought an automated flight control system that was falsely activated. All 346 people on the two flights were killed. Changes included making the flight control system less aggressive, providing more redundancy, and performing more robust pilot training that included time in a flight simulator.
Damned post-crash investigations revealed issues with the aircraft’s development, design, and certification by US regulatory agencies, which tarnished the reputation of Boeing and the FAA, which have long been the gold standard for flight safety. The crashes also led to it new legislation The FAA’s tightening of oversight over aircraft certification.
Family members of several victims have urged regulators in the US and abroad not to lift their no-fly bans on the jets and labeled the planes unsafe.
American and other airlines that operate the Max have stated that customers who have booked on the plane and are uncomfortable on the plane can switch flights without paying a fee when options are available. American Airlines has not registered any travelers who have booked the jet on other flights, an airline spokeswoman said.
FAA Administrator Steve Dickson last month told CNBC He is “100% confident” in the jets and that repeating the scenarios that led to the two crashes is “impossible”. Dickson, a former Delta Airlines Pilot flew the plane himself in September.
Airline executives recently flew on the planes to increase public confidence.
Analysts expect a great deal of control over the jets when they return to commercial fleets. An Air Canada 737 Max brought to Montreal from a warehouse in Marana, Arizona with no passengers on board diverted to Tucson, Arizona, last week after the pilots received an engine warning.
“The truth is that whenever there is a problem with the 737, even if it is a coffee maker, it will be news,” said Henry Harteveldt, former airline manager and president of the Atmosphere Research Group, one Travel advisory company. He said that while some travelers might opt for other aircraft at first if there aren’t any major issues, “it is just viewed as a different aircraft”.
The plane returns a gloomy air travel market because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Airlines cut capacity this year, a stark contrast to 2019 when they called for the jets to return to meet passenger demand.
“In a way, the best thing for the 737 Max was that it took them 20 months to get the planes back operational, and we’ve had news of the for almost a year Coronavirus That took more travel-related attention than the 737 Max, “said Harteveldt.
American ordered 76 aircraft and had 24 in its fleet at the time of landing. The pandemic and lengthy landing had caused airlines to cancel or postpone hundreds of orders. This has hit the prices for the jetliners as well and some airlines have recognized a buying opportunity. Alaska AirlinesFor example, last week the 45 aircraft order increased by 23 on a big bet on the Max.