WestJet sticking with Boeing 737 Max 8 once planes certified to fly

The Calgary-based airline says it won’t follow the lead of Indonesia’s flag carrier, which cancelled its multibillion-dollar order for 49 Max 8 jets, citing a loss of confidence after two deadly crashes in the past six months.

 

A worker walks next to a Boeing 737 MAX 8 airplane parked at Boeing Field in Seattle on March 14, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Ted S. Warren

TORONTO — WestJet Airlines plans to stick with deliveries of Boeing 737 Max aircraft once regulators approve the plane for re-entry into service.

The Calgary-based airline says it won’t follow the lead of Indonesia’s flag carrier, which cancelled its multibillion-dollar order for 49 Max 8 jets, citing a loss of confidence after two deadly crashes in the past six months.

WestJet had expected to add two more of the planes this year to increase its fleet to 13, but Boeing has suspended all future deliveries.

Spokeswoman Lauren Stewart says the 37 remaining deliveries in its order won’t take place until the grounding is lifted and it thoroughly evaluates any upgrades.

She says the narrow-body planes remain “a vital part of the fleet,” having performed “safely, reliably and efficiently” since 2017.

Air Canada and Sunwing didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

 

Companies in this story: (TSX:WJA, TSX:AC).

The Canadian Press

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