(CBS SF) — President Trump issued an order Wednesday calling on the Federal Aviation Administration to ground all Boeing 737 Max 8 and Max 9 jets following the lead of other countries who have grounded the aircraft in the wake of two deadly crashes involving Max 8 planes.
“We are going to be issuing an emergency order of prohibition around all flights of the 737 Max 8 and the 737 Max 9 and planes associated with that line,” said Trump. “Any plane currently in the air will go to its destination and thereafter be grounded until further notice.”
United flight 1815 was among the last of the Max fleet to land. The plane’s status was a topic of conversation on the flight from Houston to San Francisco.
“The passenger, he mentioned it, you know, we didn’t talk about planes crashing, but we talked about it being grounded–so that kinda made it surreal, you know, if you put it together,” said Sean Franklin of Pittsburg. “It was a safe travel for me, but whatever they need to do to improve maintenance or whatever it is that’s causing the issues–I think it would be a great thing to put them back in the air.”
Earlier Wednesday, Canada announced it was grounding all 737 Max 8s.
Several U.S. airlines continued to fly Max 8s after the two crashes which occurred within months of each other. On Sunday, a Max 8 aircraft crashed near Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, killing all 157 people on board. Eight Americans were killed, and three of the passengers had ties to Northern California.
Last October, another Max 8 plunged into the Java Sea off Indonesia, killing 146 people.
Wednesday, Boeing released the following statement:
Boeing continues to have full confidence in the safety of the 737 MAX. However, after consultation with the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), and aviation authorities and its customers around the world, Boeing has determined — out of an abundance of caution and in order to reassure the flying public of the aircraft’s safety — to recommend to the FAA the temporary suspension of operations of the entire global fleet of 371 737 MAX aircraft.
“On behalf of the entire Boeing team, we extend our deepest sympathies to the families and loved ones of those who have lost their lives in these two tragic accidents,” said Dennis Muilenburg, president, CEO, Chairman of The Boeing Company.
“We are supporting this proactive step out of an abundance of caution. Safety is a core value at Boeing for as long as we have been building airplanes; and it always will be. There is no greater priority for our company and our industry. We are doing everything we can to understand the cause of the accidents in partnership with the investigators, deploy safety enhancements and help ensure this does not happen again.”
Boeing makes this recommendation and supports the decision by the FAA.