THE CEO of United Airlines, Scott Kirby, Tuesday (01/23), 2024, expressed his disappointment with the ongoing manufacturing problems at Boeing. Our airline will consider other alternatives for future purchases of larger versions of the Boeing 737 Max.
According to Scott Kirby, said Boeing needs concrete action to restore its previously renowned reputation for quality, as reported by the Associated Press.
Kirby’s comments came a day after United revealed that it expected losses in the first three months of the year due to the grounding of its Boeing 737 Max 9 aircraft.
United has 79 Boeing 737 Max 9 planes, which were taken out of service by federal regulators more than two weeks ago after a panel came off an Alaska Airlines Max 9 plane in flight and left a huge gaping hole in the plane at high altitude.
An investigation is underway to determine whether the bolts that help hold the panel together were missing or broken.
Kirby on CNBC said he was confident the Max 9 could be allowed to fly again in the near future. But I am disappointed that manufacturing challenges continue to occur at Boeing. Several times over the past few years, manufacturing defects delayed deliveries of the 737 Max and Boeing’s larger 787s. Last year, United received 24 fewer Boeing planes than scheduled.
United Airlines has orders for Max 10 planes, a larger version of Boeing’s 737 Max line. However, that model and the smaller Max 7 were years late in obtaining certification from the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
“The grounding of the 737 Max 9 will likely further complicate Boeing’s efforts to get new models approved. The Max 10 type is at least five years late and could be even more delayed in the future,” he said.
He explained, I think this is the breaking point, the landing of Max 9, maybe the breaking point for us. We’ll at least build a plan that doesn’t involve the Max 10. I didn’t detail what aircraft the airline might acquire instead, but I did note there is only one other major global aircraft manufacturer, namely Boeing’s European competitor, Airbus. Without Max 10, it is likely that United will not grow as fast as expected. [sources/photo special]