Unluckiest Airline Ever? Norwegian Air Has Had Non Stop Problems With Boeing Aircraft

Norwegian Air hasn’t had an awful lot of luck lately. The airline operates a fleet of Boeing 787 and Boeing 737 MAX aircraft. As such, there have been a number of problems with Boeing aircraft as of late which have seen their aircraft stuck on the ground.

Having aircraft sitting on the ground is not good, especially for Norwegian. When aircraft are sitting on the ground, they are not making money. While this is never good, it is doubly so for Norwegian as the airline is coping with its own financial issues. Indeed, earlier this week the airline demanded that Boeing pay it compensation for the grounding of its 737 MAX aircraft.

Norwegian Problems
All of Norwegian’s Boeing 737 MAX aircraft are currently grounded. Photo: Norwegian

787 Problems

Norwegian’s unlucky streak began back in 2018. Regular Simple Flying readers may remember that Norwegian was, for a couple of weeks, wet-leasing the HiFly Airbus A380. The reason was that a number of their Boeing 787 were stuck on the ground following the Trent 1000 engine issues.

Following this issue, Norwegian agreed on compensation from Boeing for the issues that grounded a number of their Dreamliner aircraft. At the time, Norwegian said that this action would start having a positive effect from Q1 of 2019. However, the story doesn’t stop there…

Norwegian Problems
Problems began with the 787 Dreamliner last year. Photo: Norwegian

1st 737 MAX Problem

Norwegian has had two major problems with the Boeing 737 MAX this year. The first actually started on 14th of December when LN-BKE was flying from Dubai bound for Oslo. Unfortunately, the aircraft developed engine issues shortly after takeoff. As such, the pilots opted to divert to the nearest airport, which happened to be Shiraz in Iran.

Unfortunately, while the crew and passengers were picked up by a replacement aircraft the next day, the aircraft itself wasn’t so lucky. Due to a mix of the US Government shutdown, and sanctions against Iran, it was difficult to get replacement parts and technicians to Shiraz. The aircraft finally left Iran on 22nd February.

Norwegian Problems
For the time being, Norwegian’s fleet of Boeing 737 MAX aircraft are grounded. Photo: Norwegian

737 MAX Now Grounded

The Boeing 737 MAX issues are continuing for Norwegian, with the whole fleet grounded by Boeing. The action comes after a number of countries and airlines banned their fleets from flying in the wake of the Ethiopian Airlines tragedy earlier in the week.

As a result of the aircraft being grounded, the airline is either having to operate replacement aircraft on the Boeing 737 MAX routes or reroute passengers. This action is being financed by Norwegian at the present moment in time. For example, a quick browse of flight schedules shows that Flight 1601, which is usually operated by a Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft, was cancelled on the 13th and 15th of this month. With no set date for the Boeing 737 MAX’s return to service, Norwegian could be in for a long ride.

How do you think Norwegian will cope without the Boeing 737 MAX? Let us know in the comments down below!