Canada To Lift Boeing 737 MAX Grounding On Wednesday

The Boeing 737 MAX is one step closer to a return to service in Canada after Transport Canada today revealed the modifications the aircraft would require before recertification. The aviation authority will rescind its flight ban for the type on Wednesday.

Transport Canada, Boeing 737 MAX, Recertified
Transport Canada will lift its Boeing 737 MAX ban on Wednesday. Photo: Getty Images

While solely in the Americas for the time being, nations are beginning to repeal their Boeing 737 MAX flight bans, following the US Federal Aviation Administration’s lead in November. Now, Canada is set to become the next aviation authority to recertify the type for passenger operations.

Transport Canada is ready

Transport Canada is getting ready to recertify the Boeing 737 MAX this week. Earlier today, the aviation authority issued an airworthiness directive listing the changes that operators must make to existing aircraft, and Boeing must make to new aircraft to meet its requirements.

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According to Transport Canada, the directive issued contains “unique Canadian measures to further enhance the safety of the aircraft.” In addition, the authority issued a detailed order to operators explaining the necessary crew training required to operate the aircraft with passengers in Canadian airspace.

WestJet, Boeing 737 MAX, Return To Service
WestJet is planning to return the Boeing 737 MAX to service on Thursday. Photo: Boeing

Wednesday ungrounding

In Canada, the Boeing 737 MAX is currently grounded by a notice to airmen prohibiting the aircraft’s commercial operation. Transport Canada said that this NOTAM would be rescinded on Wednesday, January 20th.

While Canada only revealed it would unground the aircraft today, one of its operators, WestJet, has already been planning for the return of the MAX in anticipation of the news. WestJet previously revealed that it intends to start MAX operations on Thursday.

The plan was announced before the ungrounding was confirmed so that it wouldn’t come as a surprise with less than a week of notice. The two other Canadian customers, Air Canada and Sunwing Airlines, have yet to confirm when they will return the type to service.

Commenting on the aircraft’s approval, The Honourable Omar Alghabra, Canadian Minister of Transport, said,

“Over the last 20 months, Transport Canada’s civil aviation safety experts, by their rigour and thoroughness, have ensured the safety concerns the department had identified have been addressed. Canadians and the airline industry can rest assured that Transport Canada has diligently addressed all safety issues prior to permitting this aircraft to return to service in Canadian airspace.”

Transport Canada, Boeing 737 MAX, Recertified
Sunwing Airlines and Air Canada are yet to reveal when they will resume MAX flights. Photo: Sunwing Travel Group

One of three to test fly the aircraft

Transport Canada was one of three parties to test fly the Boeing 737 MAX before the FAA recertified the aircraft. The other two were the FAA and EASA, Europe’s aviation regulator. Transport Canada completed test flights of the 737 MAX on August 26th and 27th in US airspace.

Are you pleased to see Canada recertify the Boeing 737 MAX? Let us know what you think and why in the comments.