Boeing's 737 MAX Close To Returning To Service As FAA Meets With Global Regulators

Boeing 737 MAX
A Boeing 737 MAX 8 sits outside the hangar during a media tour (Photo: Reuters / Matt Mills McKnight)

Boeing is now closer to having its troubled 737 Max back in the air as the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) readies to meet with global regulators to determine the company's final requirements. The meeting with international air regulators, scheduled to be held this week, is meant to determine the final steps Boeing has to make to get their 737 Max back in service.

The items of discussion will include all of the FAA's finding to date based on its investigation of the two crashes that happened last year. According to FAA officials, they will be providing the different air regulators with detailed descriptions of their investigations into the crashes in Ethiopia and Indonesia. The crashes, which happened just five months of each other, killed a total of 346 passengers.

The FAA also revealed that it will be providing the regulators with the conclusion of its reviews of the planes themselves, which should help them determine whether or not the planes will be recertified. Boeing has already submitted their proposed revisions of the aircraft along with its plans to update the software and provide new pilot training programs.

Acting FAA administrator Dan Elwell mentioned to reporters that he hopes the public would accept their eventual decision of allowing Boeing's 737 Max to return to service if the company is able to comply with all of their requirements. Elwell declined to provide a specific timeframe for the recertification of the aircraft but mentioned that it will likely be a month or two months depending on the outcome of the meeting. The FAA is also still closely working with Boeing to learn more about their proposed software upgrade and new training program.

Attending the upcoming meeting will be 60 air regulators from 33 government agencies from around the world. Regulators from countries such as China, Australia, France, Indonesia, and South Korea will be arriving in Texas to meet with FAA officials. According to sources close to the matter, one of the topics of discussion during the meeting is a session called "Data mapping to accidents: safety actions and changes to the 737 MAX training requirements."

Boeing's 737 Max is currently the most popular model from the firm's lineup and is used by different airlines worldwide. Following the two crashes and reports of its faulty flight software, all of the active 737 Max in use was immediately grounded. Boeing revealed that it had already spent more than $1 billion following the crashes and hundreds of millions more in losses due to canceled orders. 

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