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Boeing seeks green light for 737 MAX deliveries

By Elena Berton

Plane manufacturer seeks go-ahead for delivery to airlines before pilot training

Boeing aims to deliver 737 MAX aircraft to airlines before the end of 2019 even if regulators haven’t approved related pilot training, according to a Wall Street Journal report.

Although the Federal Aviation Administration is expected to lift a ban on all MAX flights as early as December, the related pilot training is unlikely to be formally approved until a number of weeks after the FAA certifies the aircraft as safe for flying.

Under the plan, airlines would receive aircraft deliveries but wouldn’t fly the plane with passengers until pilots are trained, the newspaper said.

Last week, Boeing cleared a key milestone following a series of certification simulator tests with the FAA, a person familiar with the process told the Wall Street Journal.

Boeing was not immediately available for comment.

The delivery of the aircraft before the FAA’s green light would ease pressure on Boeing, which saw its fastest-selling aircraft grounded in March following two crashes in Ethiopia and Indonesia that killed 346 people.

Investigations in the crashes have blamed a faulty sensor and software system.

The aircraft manufacturer is also running low on parking spots for the 737 MAX as finished planes are piling up at facilities near its factory in Renton, Washington state.

The mooted plan would also help airlines, which have incurred huge losses amid cancellations during the busy summer months. Before flights can resume, the carriers would have to take their aircraft out of storage, plan demonstration flights and public-relations campaigns.

FURTHER READING: BA owner lowers capacity growth forecasts

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