Boeing 737 MAX has new hurdle to clear

Boeing 737 MAX has new hurdle to clear”

It also alleges the ongoing grounding of the 737 MAX - which has resulted in thousands of flight cancellations at many airlines including Southwest - has reduced the pilots' opportunities for work.

Boeing had initially scheduled the plane to re-enter service at the end of August but disagreements over software details, centered on how the plane's dual flight-control computers are now meant to start working together, have put that date back to at least the end of November.

Southwest, with around 10,000 pilots represented by SWAPA, had 41 more MAX jets on order for this year alone.

A spokesman for the aircraft maker said: "We continue to work with regulators on addressing their concerns and working through the process for certifying the 737 Max software and training updates and safely returning the airplane to service".

The union for Southwest Airlines Co. pilots sued Boeing Co., saying the manufacturer rushed output of the 737 Max jet to stay competitive, withholding key information about a feature that contributed to two fatal crashes within five months.

Southwest is the largest operator of the Max, which has been grounded worldwide since March.

Boeing has told United States media it will defend the lawsuit. We believe this lawsuit is meritless and will vigorously defend against it.

In court papers, Southwest's pilots association accusing Boeing of lying when it said the planes were just as safe as their predecessors. Southwest dropped the plane from its schedule through January 5, and Weaks said he doesn't expect it back until February or March.

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Southwest reiterated that it plans to use profit-sharing to provide employees part of any compensation received in a settlement with the planemaker.

The new issue was identified during tests in June when a test pilot found that the procedure took more time than was acceptable to execute.

Until the Lion Air crash in Indonesia, airlines and pilots hadn't been told of the existence of MCAS, which had been installed to counteract the effects of the Max's larger engines on the existing 737's airframe.

Boeing has said there was no breakdown in the design, testing and Federal Aviation Administration approval of the Max. Southwest Chief Financial Officer Tammy Romo has previously said the airline's seat capacity will be down 8% from original expectations at the end of the year because of the Max grounding.

The lawsuit by SWAPA, filed yesterday, Monday, October 7, 2019, in Dallas, Texas, is in addition to compensation talks being held between Southwest Airlines management and Boeing.

Final versions of the upgraded anti-stall software are in the planemaker's integration labs, simulators are being tested and Boeing expects the jetliner to be back in service early in the fourth quarter, he added.

In a statement Boeing said it "has the greatest respect for the men and women who fly for Southwest Airlines".

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