Boeing’s share price dropped Monday, following the second fatal air crash involving one of the newest versions of its popular 737.
Worldwide reaction has been swift. The U.S. is calling for design modifications, but the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has said the plane is still safe to fly.
CGTN’s Dan Williams filed this report from Chicago, where Boeing is headquartered.
U.S. aircraft manufacturing giant Boeing finds itself under the spotlight. On Sunday, Ethiopian Airlines flight 302 crashed near the capital Addis Ababa shortly after takeoff. It’s the second time within five months that a Boeing 737 Max 8, has crashed raising safety concerns.
“This is catastrophic for human lives and catastrophic for Boeing. This is a core part of their business model,” said Seth Green of Loyola University’s Quinlan School of Business. “They now have two planes that have crashed and led to a big question about the safety of their business. And for Boeing, safety is the most important word that you can associate with your business success.”
All 157 people on board the Ethiopian flight were killed.
In October last year, a Lion Air flight, also a 737 Max 8 crashed off the coast of Indonesia, killing 189 people. More than 300 of the 737 Max 8 planes are currently in operation worldwide.
This second deadly crash of a 737 Max within five months is placing further scrutiny on Boeing. Some airlines and countries have already taken the step of grounding their fleet of the aircraft.
China ordered its carriers to ground all 96 of their 737 Max 8’s in the country. Indonesia and Ethiopian airlines took similar steps, as did Cayman Airways.
U.S. carrier Southwest Airlines currently has the largest fleet of 737 Max 8’s. The company has said it’s monitoring the situation closely, but remains confident in the safety of the aircraft.
In a statement, Boeing said a technical team will be traveling to the crash site to provide assistance to investigators. Airlines around the world will be monitoring developments very closely.