Last Sunday, Ethiopian Airlines Flight ET302 crashed minutes after taking off from Addis Ababa. There were no survivors.
Less than six months prior, one of Lion Air’s domestic flights encountered the same fate. On 29 October 2018, Lion Air Flight 610 crashed into the Java Sea 12 minutes after takeoff. All 189 passengers and crew onboard perished.
As both flights involved the Boeing 737 Max 8 jet, passengers and airlines alike have voiced concerns over its safety. Though Boeing has maintained that the planes are safe, several countries have temporarily grounded the aircraft.
Which Countries Have Grounded The Boeing 737 Max?
Since the 737 Max is a fairly new model, there are only 350 of it in the world. About 54 different operators currently have at least one in their fleet. As of this writing, however, they or their governments have suspended the aircraft from flights.
So far, these countries are:
- Australia. Civil Aviation Safety Authority Down Under suspended Boeing 737 Max operations while its safety risks are reviewed. No Australian carriers currently use it, in any case.
- Canada. Both Air Canada and Westjet have Max planes in their fleet, but these have been grounded since Wednesday.
- The Caribbean. Cayman Airways grounded its new 737 Max 8’s until more safety information is available.
- China. Chinese aviation regulators ordered local airlines to suspend their Boeing 737 Max operations the day after the ET302 crash.
- Indonesia. As with China, Indonesian regulators ordered the grounding of the 737 Max 8’s. Aside from Lion Air, Garuda Indonesia is the country’s only other airline with a Max 8 in its fleet.
- Singapore. Last Tuesday, the Southeast Asian country suspended all flights of the B737 Max aircraft to and from its airspace. It required both local and international carriers to comply.
- United States of America. Yesterday, 13 March, President Trump decided to ban the Max 8’s after much deliberation. The US happens to be the only country on this list that has a significant number of them among its carriers.
So, Which Country HASN’T Banned the Boeing 737 Max 8?
Ours hasn’t, but with good reason.
As I write this, the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) is not banning B737 Max 8 flights to and from the country.
“We cannot ground the use of a type of aircraft, unless requested by the ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organization),” CAAP spokesman Eric Apolonio was quoted saying last Tuesday.
Not that it matters much, to be honest. An unnamed local carrier is waiting for the delivery of their B737 Max 8, but neither Philippine Airlines nor Cebu Pacific currently have it. Air Asia Philippines doesn’t have it either, as budget carriers prefer Airbus models.
There we have it. Nothing to worry about here. Feel free to go ahead and take advantage of the lower PH airfares this month then, mate.