Thailand grounds Boeing 737-800 fleet

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Thailand’s aviation officials have urged 5 Thai carriers to inspect their fleet of Boeing 737-800, this after the crash of the plane belonging to China Eastern Airlines last Monday, killing 132 people onboard. As a result of this recommendation, Nok Air and Thai Lion must obtain a Certificate of Airworthiness for all their operational 737-800s according to the Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand.

Right after the crash, China Eastern Airlines and its subsidiaries grounded 223 Boeing 737-800 with the purpose of undergoing safety inspections and their return to active operations is as of now still pending. The clues regarding what happened to flight MU5735 are well on their way, this after the discovery of the second black box, the Flight Data Recorder by authorities searching the crash site last Sunday. 

Both black boxes were heavily damaged on their exterior but intact internally which will allow the investigators to get clues as to why the airliner took its sudden and horrific plunge to earth from cruising altitude. The Boeing 737NG is a workhorse in the industry with more than 7000 jets flying actively and an impeccable safety record.

Memories of the Boeing 737 MAX, tarnish the investigation as the general public confuse the two types. The 737 MAX is bound to return to operations fully worldwide after its two crashes 2018 and 2019 and is now fully certified with all its issues corrected. That said it’s very important to point out that the MAX is an entirely different plane and shares with the NG only the designator 737 since they belong to the same family of narrow body jetliners.

The Civil Aviation Administration of Thailand has asked K-mile, Nok Air, Thai Summer Airways, Thai Airways and Thai Lion Air to inspect their 26 Boeing 737-800 aircraft. If any issue is found while performing the inspections, it must be resolved before being placed back in service and notified to the authorities immediately.

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    By: Alfonso Vázquez

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