Boeing 737 Max Cleared for Flight

Boeing 737 Max Cleared for Flight

December 30, 2020

On November 18, 2020, the FAA lifted the grounding order for Boeing’s 737 Max airplanes. After two fatal crashes, which were determined to be the result of flaws in a system software upgrade, the 737 Max has been grounded for about 20 months.

Southwest is the largest customer for the 737 Max (though not mentioned in the article, its entire fleet is comprised of 737 models).  34 completed aircraft are in “desert hibernation” in Victorville, CA, awaiting upgrades and FAA certification.  With the grounding order lifed, company mechanics are heading to Victorville to make the planes airworthy for travel to maintenance facilities for further work.

Although the planes were maintained in active storage, each one will require 280 hours of work and approved changes prior to this flight out of storage.

The bigger question is how customers will react.  Surveys indicate 25% are not comfortable flying the plane, so Southwest will allow penalty-free flight changes for those who choose to avoid this aircraft.

The Max is expected to enter revenue service in the second quarter of 2021.  In the meantime, 8,000 Southwest pilots will receive additional training including simulator time.


Video Spotlight: 

Facebook
Twitter
Going Touchless at Dallas-Fort Worth Airport

Going Touchless at Dallas-Fort Worth Airport

July 26, 2020

Effective operations is not just about doing things right, it’s about doing the right things.  Dallas-Fort Worth Airport (DFW) has emerged as the busiest airport in the world with the recent collapse in air travel due to the coronavirus.  These unexpected conditions have required a sharp and timely pivot for long-planned capital and operating plans.

DFW has the advantage of being both the home base and major hub of one of the world’s largest air carriers, American Airlines.  In addition to the summer ramp up in flights (though still substantially off the usual activity for this time of year), airlines have implemented their own changes by relying on more hub and spoke operations requiring less overall flights routing through central hubs.

DFW is responding to the “new normal” by emphasizing sanitation measures and moving to a more self-service model in luggage check-in and boarding.  Technology is being applied to expedite these changes and simultaneously increasing efficiency (with a 20% reduction in operating costs expected).

This quick response and re-focus of competitive priorities has allowed DFW to maintain and to improve its ability to serve both airlines and wary customers.


Video Spotlight: American Airlines to Lift Continue reading

Facebook
Twitter