MOSCOW, March 13: Tommy Yang - Despite the fact that Chinese aviation authorities have decided to ground all Boeing 737 MAX planes from domestic flights on Monday, two deadly crashes in recent months involving the US aircraft maker’s popular narrow-body airplane are unlikely to hurt its market share in China in the long term, experts told Sputnik.
A Boeing 737 MAX 8 operated by Ethiopian Airlines crashed shortly after takeoff on Sunday, killing 157 people on board. The tragic accident marked the second deadly crash in less than five months that involved Boeing’s hot selling aircraft, which has been developed as the US aircraft maker’s answer to the A320 Neo from its European rival Airbus. In October 2018, a Boeing 737 MAX 8 operated by the Indonesian airline Lion Air crashed also shortly after takeoff, killing 189 people.
The consecutive crashes involving the recently delivered Boeing 737 MAX 8 have raised questions on whether the aircraft itself had issues that contributed to the accidents, despite the fact that investigations on the causes of both crashes are still under way. Aviation authorities in China, Ethiopia and Indonesia have grounded the Boeing 737 MAX planes, while Cayman Airways from the Cayman Islands and Jet Airways from India took similar actions.
Major US air carriers such as Southwest Airlines and American Airlines, who are key customers of Boeing 737 Max planes, have decided to continue to operate flights with the aircraft in question. Panicked customers flooded social media accounts of those US airlines with questions over the planes used in their upcoming flights, as part of their efforts to avoid flying on board the Boeing 737 MAX. (UNI-SPUTNIK)