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Boeing Halts 737 MAX Flights to Inspect Engine Cracks

May 10, 2017
2 min read
Boeing Halts 737 MAX Flights to Inspect Engine Cracks
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Update 5/16/17 3:38pm: Just five days after testing of the 737 MAX resumed, Boeing has now delivered its first 737 MAX. The delivery customer is Asia low-cost carrier Malindo Air.

Update 5/12/17 3:31pm: According to AirwaysLive, Boeing has resumed flights of the 737 MAX:

The 737 MAX is one of the most anticipated aircraft launches in recent memory. Just days before Boeing was set to deliver the aircraft to its first customers, there are reports that Boeing has put MAX flights on hold.

According to the limited information that's available, Boeing decided to halt 737 MAX flights for additional engine inspections after discovering cracks in the low pressure turbine section. Boeing was notified of the issue by CFM, the company providing the MAX with its engines.

Boeing has also released a statement, reading in part:

"We are working with CFM to inspect the discs in question. CFM and its supplier notified us after discovering the issue as a part of their quality inspection process. At no time have we experienced an issue associated with the LPT during our ongoing MAX testing program.
Out of an abundance of caution, we decided to temporarily suspend MAX flights. The step is consistent with our priority focus on safety for all who use and fly our products."

Boeing also said in its statement that it plans to begin MAX deliveries in May. The company also detailed its rigorous test program for all aircraft, including more than 2,000 hours on the engines.

A number of carriers — both domestic and international — have large MAX orders. American Airlines just announced its plans to decrease the amount of legroom for passengers and add seats to its MAX aircraft, and Norwegian Air announced that it plans to fly its new transatlantic routes from the East Coast to Europe with the MAX.

Featured image by The Boeing 737 MAX engine, CFM's LEAP 1-B