England took a break from Brexit negotiations to announce it will ban all Boeing 737 Max 8 flights from using its airspace. The precautionary measure comes after an Ethiopian Airlines flight crashed on Sunday, killing all 157 people on board.
China, Indonesia, Ethiopia, Oman, Australia, and Singapore have also suspended operations of the aircraft in and out of their airports in the wake of the fatal crash—the second involving a 737 Max 8 in less than five months. In October a Lion Air Max 8 jet crashed into the sea off the coast of Indonesia.
In the U.S., Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-California) called on the Federal Aviation Administration to ground all Boeing 737 Max 8 airplanes until an investigation into Sunday’s Ethiopian Airlines plane crash is complete. “Until the cause of the crash is known and it’s clear that similar risks aren’t present in the domestic fleet, I believe all Boeing 737 Max 8 series aircraft operating in the United States should be temporarily grounded,” Feinstein said in a statement.
Yesterday, some U.S. airlines, including American Airlines and Southwest Airlines, said they were confident in the safety of their fleets, including the Boeing 737 Max 8. However, Norwegian Air Shuttle has since decided to temporarily suspend the use of the 18 Boeing 737 Max 8s in its fleet. Tomas Hesthammer, Norwegian’s acting chief operating officer, released the following statement:
“In response to the temporary suspension of Being 737 Max operations by multiple aviation authorities we have taken the decision to not operate flights using this aircraft type, until advised otherwise by the relevant aviation authorities. We would like to apologize to customers for any inconvenienced caused, however, safety will always remain our top priority.”
Boeing has not responded to a request for comment.