EASA to operate 737 MAX test flights in September


EASA, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency, will conduct test flights with the troubled Boeing 737 MAX. The flights will take place in the Canadian city of Vancouver over the course of one week starting September 7th, the EASA announced on Thursday.

Based on the test flights, the EASA will assess whether the changes that have been made are sufficient for an approval. The test flights are therefore the first step towards the return of the aircraft type to the European skies.

One week after the start of the test flights, supervisors from the so-called Joint Operations Evaluation Board will assess the new training procedures for 737 MAX pilots at London Gatwick. In addition, the EASA will be conducting simulator tests at the same London airport from the 1st of September.

At the beginning of July, the American FAA, the Federal Aviation Administration, already completed the flight tests for the recertification of the aircraft in the United States. Based on those flights, the FAA is demanding several adjustments to be made to the Boeing 737 MAX.

The problems with the 737 MAX have already cost Boeing billions of dollars. The plane has been grounded since March last year after two fatal crashes caused by problems with the MCAS, the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System.

Meanwhile, Boeing has resumed production of the aircraft at the 737 MAX factory in Renton near Seattle. As the year progresses, the aircraft manufacturer wants to increase the production of the aircraft. The goal is to have at least 31 737 MAX airliners rolling off the line every month by 2021.

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