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The Boeing 737 Max saga isn’t even close to being over

Published Sep 2nd, 2019 2:02PM EDT
737 max status
Image: Elaine Thompson/AP/Shutterstock

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It’s now been nearly six months since airlines around the world were forced to ground any 737 Max commercial jets in their respective fleets. The decision came after a pair of horrific crashes claimed the lives of hundreds, and Boeing’s flight control software was implicated as a cause of both accidents.

Now, despite toiling away at the problem — and rolling out software updates to its aircraft — it would appear Boeing hasn’t done enough to make its new jets flight-worthy. As CNN reports, American Airlines just extended flight cancellations for Boeing 737 trips through December 3rd. highlighting the seriousness of the problems.

This latest round of cancellations pushes the number of daily cancelled flights to a whopping 140, and that’s just for American Airlines. United Airlines also recently extended its 737 Max cancellations well into December, and Southwest pushed its timeline all the way into early January 2020, ruling out the possibility of the planes carrying holiday travelers.

Boeing’s 737 Max was one of the company’s most popular commercial aircraft, and every day the planes remain grounded means massive losses for the companies that invested in them.

Nobody is sure when the jets will be ready to fly again, and even when they are deemed ready to take to the skies, airlines aren’t sure how the traveling public will react. There’s been plenty of discussion over how to position the 737s once they are cleared for flight, with some airlines considering renaming them in order to sanitize their image.

Back in June, a poll of thousands of recent airline travelers suggested that roughly half of all fliers would actively avoid the planes in the future, and just 14 percent saying they would be happily willing to board a 737 Max.

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