The plane that crashed was not a Boeing 737 Max

BEIJING – The plane that crashed Monday in southern China was a Boeing 737-800, the mainstay of fleets around the world with a strong safety record.

The model is part of a family of narrow-body jets known as Boeing’s Next Generation, which has a maximum range of more than 3,000 miles, but is often used on shorter routes.

The 737-800 is an older model. Some airlines have switched to the 737-Max, a newer narrow-body aircraft. The 737-Max has been temporarily grounded worldwide after two of them crashed nearly four years ago.

The 737-Max was widely criticized after one of them crashed in Indonesia at the end of 2018 and The second one crashed in Ethiopia. The Max was grounded worldwide following its second crash, in March 2019. Boeing ended up making a series of changes to the plane before it was re-approved for inclusion. commercial activity in most countries 20 months later.

However, China has waited longer than most countries to allow the 737-Max to continue flying. China’s aviation regulators only approved it in early December and required Chinese airlines to demonstrate that they had implemented all of Boeing’s changes before they could actually start flying. on trade routes.

Chinese airlines have already made these changes and are still testing the aircraft, so the 737-Max has yet to return to service in mainland China, said David Yu, a professor of aviation finance at China New York University’s Shanghai campus, said.

Boeing agreed in January of last year paid more than $2.5 billion in fines to the Department of Justice to settle criminal charges that the company conspired to deceive the Federal Aviation Administration, which regulates Boeing and reviews its aircraft.

Criminal charges against the company relate to the actions of two employees who failed to share information with the FAA about changes made to computer software on the 737-Max. That software was later implicated in both incidents.

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