Ethiopian Airlines has grounded its entire Boeing 737 MAX 8 fleet after the Sunday crash of one of its planes on a flight to Nairobi that killed all 157 persons on board.
The airline has also recovered the black box, which would open the lead to what caused the crash.
This is coming as Nigeria’s biggest carrier, Air Peace, has clarified that it has not taken delivery of the same B737 MAX 8, which it ordered last year.
The crashed aircraft, a recently delivered 737 MAX 8, took off from Addis Ababa at 8.38a.m. local time with 149 passengers and eight crew on board, but lost contact with air traffic control at 8.44a.m. and crashed.
A statement from the airline yesterday said: “Following the tragic accident of ET 302/10 March B-737-8 MAX (ET-AVJ), Ethiopian Airlines has decided to ground all B-737-8 MAX fleet effective yesterday March 10, 2019 until further notice.
“Although we don’t yet know the cause of the accident, we had to decide to ground the particular fleet as extra safety precaution. Ethiopian Airlines will release further information as soon as it is available.”
China has also grounded the aircraft type, pending further investigation.
Ethiopian Airlines has also announced that it has recovered the black box, which would open the lead to what caused the crash.
The airline has also started recovering bodies of those who died in the crash,” the airline said.
Airwise.com also reported that Chinese aviation regulators have also grounded all the country’s 737-8 MAX, as has Cayman Airways, but major US and Canadian operators of the type expressed confidence in the aircraft.
Boeing said a technical team would travel to the crash site to provide technical assistance under the direction of the Ethiopian Accident Investigation Bureau and the US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). The NTSB is part of the investigation due to the aircraft’s country of manufacture.
Ethiopian Airlines said there were 149 passengers and eight crew onboard from 35 countries. The nationalities include 32 Kenyans, 18 Canadians, nine Ethiopians, eight Chinese, eight Italians, eight Americans, two Nigerians, seven French, seven British, six Egyptians and five Germans.
Boeing also extended its “heartfelt sympathies” to the families and loved ones of the passengers and crew on board and “stands ready to support the Ethiopian Airlines team.”
Ethiopian Airlines also said that it had recovered the Cockpit Voice Recorder of the ill-fated flight.