Ethiopian Airlines on Sunday announced that they had grounded all their Boeing 737-8 MAX fleet after the tragedy that left a total of 157 people dead.
Ethiopian Airlines take drastic action over Boeing planes after Sunday's crash
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Through a statement issued on their twitter account, the airline pointed out that the move was a precautionary measure as investigations into the crash continued.
“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 as from March 10 2019 until further notice.
"Although we don’t know yet the cause of the accident, we had to decide to ground the particular fleet as an extra safety precaution,” read a part of the statement.
In a similar move, China Civil Aviation Authority on Monday suspended all commercial flights of the model after the country noted a similarity in the crash to a different one in Indonesia involving the B-737 Max 8 type of aircraft.
The Asian aviation administration remarked that operation of the model would only resume after confirming the appropriate measures to successfully ensure flight safety.
Reports concerning the probable cause to the weekend tragedy, suggested that a software installed in the plane might have malfunctioned and caused the pilots to lose control over the aircraft.
Queries over the system installed in the Boeing 737 8 MAX model for the Ethiopian Airlines
This was the second disaster of the Boeing model after a similar accident occurred in October 2018 with the Lion Air flight that left 189 people dead.
According to an article published by international media house CNN, former Inspector General of the U.S Transportation Department Mary Schiavo who also doubles up as a CNN aviation analyst, stated that concerns have been raised over the brand-new plane that has been involved in two accidents in a space of a year.
“Here we have a brand-new aircraft that's gone down twice in a year.
“That rings alarm bells in the aviation industry, because that just doesn't happen," remarked Schiavo.
Schiavo further highlighted that such similarities could not be ignored over the safety concerns posed by the model of the aircraft.
"The similarities with Lion Air are too great not to be concerned," explained the Aviation expert.
Both models for the two airline companies had a new safety system installed referred to as the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS), that automatically puts the plane on a nose dive mode if data suggests it is at risk.
Boeing demands training of pilots over software shut-off procedure
In the case of the two, Schiavo speculated that the system was responding to defective data that indicated the nose was tilted at a higher angle than it was, indicating the plane was at risk of stalling.
The former Inspector General noted that the pilots might have tried to correct the problem facing the aircraft.
“All pilots should have been trained on that function after Lion Air," stated Schiavo.
She further added that Boeing approached the matter from weird angle when they sent out an emergency bulletin stating that all airlines had to make sure they had trained their pilots in the shut-off procedure.
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