Boeing’s 737 Max given greenlight to fly in EU skies


Boeing’s 737 Max plane is safe to return to service in Europe, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (Easa) has said.

It lifts a 22-month flight ban for the jet, which followed two crashes which caused 346 deaths.

The plane has already been cleared to resume flights in the US and Brazil.

This week a senior manager at Boeing’s 737 plant in Seattle warned that recertification had happened too quickly.

But regulators in the US and Europe insist their reviews have been thorough, and that the 737 Max aircraft is now safe.

Easa executive director Patrick Ky said: “We have every confidence that the aircraft is safe, which is the precondition for giving our approval.

“But we will continue to monitor 737 Max operations closely as the aircraft resumes service.

“In parallel, and at our insistence, Boeing has also committed to work to enhance the aircraft still further in the medium term, in order to reach an even higher level of safety.”

Easa represents 31 mainly EU nations, excluding the UK which formally left the bloc this month.

The UK’s Civil Aviation Authority is expected to announce whether it will clear the plane to fly imminently.

The 737 Max’s first accident occurred in October 2018, when a Lion Air jet came down in the sea off Indonesia.

The second involved an Ethiopian Airlines version that crashed shortly after takeoff from Addis Ababa, just four months later.

Both have been attributed to flawed flight control software, which became active at the wrong time and prompted the aircraft to go into a catastrophic dive.