American Airlines 737 max airplanes have been grounded since March and it appears that their grounding will be extended yet again. The last grounding extension was until September 3rd. Yet, with no fix for the 737 and Boeing still working with the FAA the grounding has now been extended until November 2nd. The extension matches United’s grounding plans.
American Airlines extended grounding is resulting in a cancellation of over 100 flights a day. With 24 jets in their fleet and several planes sitting on the ground waiting delivery in Renton, American Airline is feeling the pressure of not having all their valuable resources available to them. American Airlines is the first airline to admit canceling an entire route because of the 737 max grounding. Dallas-DFW to Oakland has been axed indefinitely. Note that not all routes/flights scheduled to be operated by the 737 max has been canceled. American Airlines is substituting other aircraft and reshuffling their scheduling to cope with the grounding.
There is still no word from Southwest Airlines about an extension to the grounding cancelation. Currently Southwest Airlines has taken the 737 max 8 out of schedule through September.
When will the 737 max 8 be approved to fly again? That is still unsure. The FAA is working with Boeing to approve software upgrade and a new pilot training program. Amongst other changes, these changes will add layers of protection to prevent erroneous data from triggering a system called MCAS, which was activated in both the planes before they crashed.
Stay tuned. It may be 2020 before passengers get on a Max airplane again.