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US American Airlines flight attendants have literally begged not to work on the Boeing 737 Max when it returns, union boss says

02:05  16 november  2019
02:05  16 november  2019 Source:   businessinsider.com

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a small airplane sitting on the tarmac of an airport runway© American Airlines

    American Airlines flight attendants are "begging" not to have to work on the Boeing 737 Max when it returns to service after its grounding, the head of the union representing them said Thursday.

    "I will tell you that I hear from flight attendants every day, and they're begging me not to make them go back up in that plane," Lori Bassani, the president of the Association of Professional Flight Attendants, said, according to The Dallas Morning News.

    House leaders demand FAA answer why it overruled its own engineers’ safety concerns about Boeing 737 Max

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    The 737 Max has been grounded around the world since March, after an Ethiopian Airlines flight carrying 157 people crashed shortly after takeoff. It was the second disaster involving the plane in six months. The other crash, involving a Lion Air plane in Indonesia, killed 189 people in October 2018.

    It is unclear when the 737 Max will return to service, but Boeing said this week that it would look to resume deliveries of the aircraft to airlines in December, ahead of a likely return to service in 2020.

    737 Max planes will be allowed to fly only when a software update to its Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System - software that has been blamed for the two crashes - is formally approved by the US Federal Aviation Administration and other regulators around the world.

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    Many airlines have removed the 737 Max from their schedules until at least March.

    Bassani has been an outspoken critic of Boeing during the grounding of the 737 Max, and she said earlier in November that American Airlines flight attendants could refuse to work on the plane once it returned to service if they did not believe it was safe.

    "The 28,000 flight attendants working for American Airlines refuse to walk onto a plane that may not be safe and are calling for the highest possible safety standards to avoid another tragedy," a letter signed by Bassani sent to Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg said, according to Reuters.

    American Airlines has 24 737 Max planes in its fleet, with 76 yet to be delivered by Boeing.

    In separate comments Thursday, Bassani said that despite her worries about the Max's return, her union would not join the scores of airlines, pilots, and victims' families taking legal action against Boeing over the 737 Max crashes and its subsequent grounding.

    Airlines expect 737 MAX grounding to last nearly a year

      Airlines expect 737 MAX grounding to last nearly a year Two major US airlines announced plans Friday to pull the Boeing 737 MAX from their schedules into March, raising the prospect the plane could be out of service for nearly a full year. The MAX was grounded by regulators worldwide earlier this year after two fatal crashes killed 346 people. The Federal Aviation Administration issued its order on March 13, 2019. Southwest Airlines, which operates the largest US-based fleet of Boeing 737 MAX jets, announced Friday it anticipates the plane returning to service on March 6, 2020. It cited "continued uncertainty around the timing of MAX return to service" by the FAA.

    Airlines and staff are suing the plane manufacturer over lost wages from the plane's grounding.

    "It's not our only aircraft, so our people didn't really lose wages," she told the Dallas Business Journal. "Their schedules were changed and they were impacted, but they could always get another flight on another airplane."

    Dennis Muilenburg wearing a suit and tie talking on a cell phone© Jonathan Ernst/Reuters

    American Airlines' approach contrasts with that of the union representing pilots for Southwest Airlines, which is suing Boeing for $100 million in lost compensation, accusing the company of rushing the jet to market and misrepresenting it as safe.

    Boeing has faced sharp criticism from staff of US airlines during the grounding, and earlier this week it was subject to a sharp rebuke from Jon Weaks, the head of the Southwest Airlines Pilots Association. Southwest operates the biggest fleet of 737 Max planes of any airline, with 34 in service before the grounding.

    In a letter dated Wednesday, Weaks told colleagues he was concerned about what he said was Boeing "increasingly publicizing" the negative consequences of the plane remaining grounded.

    United joins American and Southwest in extending 737 Max cancellations into March

      United joins American and Southwest in extending 737 Max cancellations into March Joining American and Southwest, United extends 737 MAX cancellations through March 2020 The Federal Aviation Administration grounded the aircraft after it was involved in two crashes in Indonesia and in Ethiopia that killed a total of 346 people.

    He accused Boeing executives of using such information to pressure regulators and airlines to get the plane back in the sky as soon as possible.

    Weaks went on to accuse Boeing of "arrogance, ignorance, and greed" in its approach to the 737 Max.

    Read more:

    • Here are all the investigations and lawsuits that Boeing and the FAA are facing after the 737 Max crashes
    • The head of Southwest's pilots union says Boeing is trying to rush the 737 Max back into service out of 'arrogance'
    • US airlines are pulling the 737 Max from their schedules until March, suggesting they're losing faith in Boeing's plans to get the plane flying in 2019
    • New report reveals why Boeing's 737 Max has taken so long to return to service

    With Boeing in Cross Hairs, Lion Air Gets a Pass on Poor Safety Record .
    When Lion Air Flight 610 took off in clear skies a year ago, the 737 jetliner carried with it an anti-stall system designed by Boeing that would propel the plane into a nose-dive minutes after takeoff, killing all 189 aboard. But the plane was saddled with another safety burden. Flight 610 was operated by Lion Air, a low-cost Indonesian carrier that has benefited from its political connections to become one of the world’s fastest growing airlines, despite a questionable safety record.

    usr: 1
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