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FAA orders inspections of all 737s; airlines expect no operational disruption

July 16, 2021
2 min read
United Airlines
FAA orders inspections of all 737s; airlines expect no operational disruption
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The FAA this week issued a directive to all airlines operating the Boeing 737, mandating new inspections on a switch that controls cabin pressure. The good news: summer travelers shouldn't see any impact.

The airworthiness directive (AD) applies to all 737 aircraft of every generation, from the original models through the latest 737 MAX. There are 2,502 of the aircraft active in the U.S., and 9,315 globally.

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There are two cabin altitude pressure switches on each 737. If they fail at the same time, cabin pressure could drop, leading to dangerously low oxygen levels.

Importantly, this has not happened during an actual flight. The order was prompted after several reports of newly installed pressure switches failing during testing.

Normally, the switches are tested every 6,000 flight hours. Under the new rule, those tests will be mandated every 2,000 flight hours, instead. All active aircraft must be checked within 2,000 flight hours of their last test, or within 90 days of the AD taking effect — the rule is scheduled to be published on Tuesday, July 20.

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According to the FAA, each inspection and — if necessary — replacement, should take no more than an hour.

U.S. airlines that rely on various 737 models, including American Airlines, Southwest Airlines, United Airlines, and Delta Air Lines, told TPG that they do not expect any operational impact due to the required inspections, which can be accomplished during standard maintenance or other time spent on the ground.

More: Delta says those long call-center hold times should improve by September

Representatives for Alaska Airlines did not immediately return a request for comment.

Featured image by AFP via Getty Images
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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Why We Chose It

It's hard to find a card that competes with the mile-long list of benefits that come with the Amex Business Platinum. While it's certainly not the card for the average consumer, a business owner with tons of expenses -- especially related to travel -- will find this card incredibly valuable. This card is similar to the consumer version that Amex offers, but with more business-oriented perks around statement credits and earning rates that are a better fit for business owners.

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  • Limited high-bonus categories outside of travel
  • The Points Guy Exclusive Offer: Earn 150,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $15,000 on eligible purchases with the Business Platinum Card® within the first 3 months of Card Membership.
  • Get 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights and prepaid hotels on amextravel.com, and 1X points for each dollar you spend on eligible purchases.
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  • $189 CLEAR® Credit: Use your Card and get up to $189 back per year on your CLEAR® membership. CLEAR® is available at more than 50 U.S. airports and stadiums.
  • The American Express Global Lounge Collection® can provide an escape at the airport. With more than 1,400 airport lounges across 140 countries and counting, you have more lounge location options than any other credit card on the market as of 9/2021.
  • $695 Annual Fee.
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