Boeing 737 MAX can fly in Irish airspace again

Boeing 737 MAX can fly in Irish airspace again

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Norwegian operated the Boeing 737 MAX aircraft to the US from Shannon Airport – Photo: © Pat Flynn 2017

The Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) Aviation Regulator has today confirmed it is now in a position to lift the suspension of operations of the Boeing 737 MAX aircraft into and out of Irish airspace.

On 12th March 2019, the Irish Aviation Authority suspended Boeing 737 MAX aircraft entering Irish airspace and such Irish registered aircraft from flying wherever located. The only exception to this was the movement of certain ferry flights of this aircraft.

An Icelandair Boeing 737 MAX on a ferry flight was allowed land at Shannon in October 2019 – Photo: © Pat Flynn 2019

The grounding of the Boeing 737-MAX-8 and 9 series jets followed two fatal crashes in Indonesia and Ethiopia in October 2018 and March 2019 respectively. A total of 346 people died in the crashes including Clare man Micheál Ryan who was killed in the Ethiopian tragedy.

Earlier today, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) issued an Airworthiness Directive for the Boeing 737 MAX, mandating a package of software upgrades, electrical wiring rework, maintenance checks, operations-manual updates and pilot training. This package has been developed by Boeing to address the safety concerns raised by EASA.

IAA Aviation Regulator, Mr. Diarmuid Ó Conghaile, said: “The publication of this directive sets out the requirements for the MAX to return to service and any 737 MAX aircraft now meeting these requirements will be approved to operate in Irish airspace. EASA has conducted a comprehensive review of the measures proposed by Boeing.

The IAA and other national European regulators have been involved in the EASA review process. We are satisfied that EASA’s review has been comprehensive and ensures that the aircraft is safe to return to operations in Europe.”

The IAA will now engage with airline operators to ensure that all the conditions for a return to service are met.

A comprehensive look at the Boeing 737 MAX can be found here.

Air Canada also operated the Boeing 737 MAX to and from Shannon – Photo: © Pat Flynn 2018
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