Amid mass grounding, Boeing rolls out 737 MAX 10 jet in subdued ceremony
It was more of a subdued ceremony than what traditionally occurs, but hundreds of Boeing employees nonetheless turned out for the official roll out of the company’s biggest 737 MAX at the Renton, Washington factory.
The two recent crashes have resulted in all 737 MAX jets being grounded. The Lion Air crash out of Indonesia resulted in the death of 189 people and the Ethiopian Airlines crash led to 157 deaths. It’s believed to be linked to an automated system that pushed the nose of the plane downwards.
This new 737 MAX 10 is a slightly expanded version of MAX 9, with 10 more seats and a shorter maximum range, reports Geekwire. Though the grounding puts all future releases into question, Boeing has upwards of 550 orders for the MAX 10.
“Today is not just about a new airplane. It’s about the people who design, build and support it,” said Mark Jenks, vice president of of the 737 program said in a statement. “This team’s relentless focus on safety and quality shows the commitment we have to our airline customers and every person who flies on a Boeing airplane.”
Recently Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg testified in front of the House Transportation Committee on Capitol Hill, where he apologized to any families affected by the crashes, many of whom were in attendance at that meeting.
Before grounding the entire 737 MAX fleet, Boeing had over 300 of the jets in service across the globe. Some expect to see them restored to service as late as March 2020.
“I’m honored to take this airplane on its first flight and show the world what you’ve put your heart and soul into,” 737 Chief Pilot Jennifer Henderson told the employee crowd.
Chopper 7 over the Boeing 737 MAX 10, which the company rolled out this morning in Renton. Unlike some previous rollouts, reporters were not invited. The company released a single photo of what it called “an employee recognition event.” Story on KIRO 7 News at 5. pic.twitter.com/6yZt7fPz5q
— Graham Johnson (@GrahamKIRO7) November 22, 2019