Dubai: UAE’s General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) announced Sunday that no UAE carrier has been impacted by the ‘technical defect’ observed in the Boeing MAX 737-9s.
“The statement was issued in response to a recent incident involving a Boeing Max 737-9 from the United States, prompting the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to ground some of these aircraft for necessary inspections,” reported state news agency WAM.
GCAA said it has thoroughly examined records related to this model, considering directives from the FAA. It also emphasized its ongoing monitoring of updates in this matter.
The FAA temporarily grounded 171 Boeing 737 MAX 9 jetliners for safety checks following a cabin panel blowout that forced a new Alaska Airlines jet carrying passengers to make an emergency landing. The plane was in service for eight weeks, according to Reuters.
Earlier in the day, Dubai carrier flydubai confirmed that the three Boeing 737 MAX 9 planes in its fleet remain ‘unaffected’ as the carrier operates its MAX 9s with a deactivated mid-aft exit door configuration. “This is not referenced in the directive,” said a flydubai spokesperson.
“Following The Emergency Airworthiness Directive (EAD) issued by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on January 6, 2024, we can confirm that the three Boeing 737 MAX 9 aircraft in our fleet are not affected,” they added.
According to aviation analytics company Cirium, about 215 Boeing MAX 9 aeroplanes are in service globally. American carrier United Airlines operates 79, and Alaska Airlines has 65. Their combined fleets represent about 70 per cent of the jets in service.
Other operators relying on the MAX 9 include Panama’s Copa Airlines, Aeromexico, and Iceland Air. In the region, flydubai and Turkish Airlines use the aircraft. Turkish Airlines, however, has grounded five of its Boeing 737 MAX 9 jets in its fleet for inspections following an incident in the US. Depending on seating configuration, the MAX 9 can transport as many as 220 passengers.