Home Business Hundreds of Flights in the US cancelled, Boeing Stock Fall after the door of an Alaska Airlines Flight Blew Out Mid-air

Hundreds of Flights in the US cancelled, Boeing Stock Fall after the door of an Alaska Airlines Flight Blew Out Mid-air

Hundreds of flights across the U.S. have been cancelled, impacting major airlines like Alaska and United. Alaska Airlines Flight 1282’s emergency landing triggered the grounding.

A section of the aeroplane in question had popped out mid-air, creating a gaping hole and causing the cabin to depressurize. Flight data showed that the plane climbed to 16,000 feet (4,876 meters) before the incident took place. The door plug fell off over the Portland suburb of Cedar Hills, according to Jennifer Homendy, the chair of the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB).

An emergency exit used as a cabin window blew out of the Alaskan Airlines flight from Portland to California.

Passengers were shaken to their bones while some of their belongings flew out of the hole. The plane made an emergency landing in Portland, and fortunately, all 174 passengers and six crew members on board were safe. Although no serious injuries occurred, the FAA swiftly grounded all 171 Boeing 737 MAX 9 jets equipped with the same problematic door plug. Alaska Airlines owns 67 of these.  United and Alaska are the heaviest users of the grounded model.

Implication of FAA’s order for United and Alaska Airlines : 

Alaska Airlines stocks dropped almost 5% on Monday morning but quickly rose. United stock fell 2%. According to Flight Aware, Alaska Airlines and United cancelled more than 350 flights on Monday. This represents 20 percent of Alaska’s scheduled trips on Monday and about 8 percent of United’s. Alaska Airlines bore the brunt of the incident as it cancelled the most flights, impacting nearly 25,000 passengers.

The cancellations are expected to persist into the first half of the week, following the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) directive for immediate inspections. In a statement issued on Sunday, the FAA made it clear that the affected jets would remain grounded until the regulatory authority confirms their safety. The safety tests will centre on a specific panel associated with the door plug that tore off during the Alaska Airlines flight.

Trouble For Boeing? 

The incident has raised serious concerns about Boeing’s 737 MAX 9 fleet, which has been described as “the most scrutinized transport aircraft in history” after a series of safety issues. In 2018 and 2019, the fleet was grounded after two of its aircraft crashed due to flawed flight control software, killing 346 people.

Following the recent incident, Boeing shares dropped by 8% on Monday. Those of its supplier, Spirit AeroSystems, dropped 11.1 percent to $28.2. Spirit AeroSystems made the door plug that dramatically fell off mid-air.

As the company grapples with the economic aftermath of the incident, questions about the airworthiness of its Boeing 737 MAX 9 fleet linger.

In a recent statement, United said: “Since we began preliminary inspections on Saturday, we have found instances that appear to relate to installation issues in the door plug – for example, bolts that needed additional tightening.” Boeing might be in for a business crisis.

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