Published on Thursday, June 13, 2019

American Airlines bosses will fly 737 MAX before it takes passengers

American Airlines will fill its next 737 MAX flight with company managers before it starts carrying paying passengers again.

Executives and other staff members will take to the skies in its first flight once regulators clear the aircraft for travel again.

It hopes to build some confidence in the plane's safety ahead of commercial service with the general public.

"We'd like to get it flying again so when customers get on it, they realise it's been flying potentially for weeks," said American spokesman, Ross Feinstein.

American has taken the Boeing 737 MAX out of schedules until September 3 and still believes it will get official clearance by the end of the summer.

"We wouldn't be selling seats today if we didn't think it was a highly likely possibility that the aircraft will be flying by September 3," said American CEO Doug Parker.

That looks like an over-optimistic timeline with the FAA still not prepared to give an exact date.

The FAA's associate administrator for airline safety Ali Bahrami said he expects it to be back in the air by the end of the year.

Boeing chief Dennis Muilenburg also hinted at a similar timeline in an interview last week.


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