In the wake of the unfortunate crash on Sunday, Ethiopian Airlines has announced the grounding of its Boeing 737 MAX 8 fleet as an “extra safety precaution.”
All 157 people on board, belonging to 35 different nationalities, lost their lives after a newly issued Boeing 737 MAX 8 jet of the Ethiopian Airlines crashed a few minutes after taking off from the Bole International Airport here on Sunday.
The grounding came into effect on March 10 itself, according to airlines which tweeted the announcement on Monday.
Accident Bulletin no. 5 Issued on March 11, 2019 at 07:08 AM Local Time pic.twitter.com/rwxa51Fgij
— Ethiopian Airlines (@flyethiopian) March 11, 2019
“Although we don’t yet know the cause of the accident, we had to decide to ground the particular fleet as extra safety precaution,” the Airlines stated in Accident Bulletin number five, issued on March 11.
The Chinese authorities have also grounded all Boeing aircraft of the same make following the incident. There were eight Chinese nationals on board the crashed Ethiopian Airlines flight.
The specific Boeing jet was also involved in the Lion Air crash in October last year, which claimed the lives of all 189 people on board after it nosedived into the Java Sea near Jakarta, Indonesia. Notably, both incidents took place just a few minutes after taking off.
“Given in both air crashes, the aircraft were newly delivered Boeing 737 MAX 8, and both accidents occur during the take-off, they share certain similarities,” the Chinese government noted on Monday, according to CNN.
South Korea on Monday also conducted an emergency safety check on Boeing 737 MAX 8 passenger planes before their departure, the Transport Ministry said.
Xinhua News Agency reported that the Ministry had sent a team of officials to probe the autopilot and other systems of the two B737 MAX 8 passenger planes, run by South Korea’s aircraft carrier Eastar Jet and US-based aerospace company Boeing.
In India also The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) on Monday issued an advisory to Boeing 737 MAX operators after a Nairobi-bound Ethiopian Airlines’ aircraft crashed minutes after taking off from Addis Ababa, killing 157 people, including four Indians on board.
In an advisory to B737 MAX operators after Ethiopia crash, the DGCA said: “This is the second fatal accident to B-737 max aircraft within a span of five months. At present, two Indian carriers, SpiceJet (12 aircraft) and Jet Airways (five aircraft) have these aircraft.”
Aviation regulator DGCA has issued a circular for additional actions and said it will continue to closely monitor the situation and may impose or take any other operational or maintenance measures or restrictions based on the information received from accident investigation agency/FAA/Boeing.
“The operators have been directed to ensure that no B-737–8 MAX aircraft in their fleet is operated without compliance of above, effective from 1200 hrs on 12th March 2019,” the DGCA said in its statement.