The Boeing 737 MAX will take another key step in its comeback to commercial travel on Wednesday by attempting to reassure the public with a test flight by American Airlines conducted for the news media.
After being grounded for 20 months following two deadly crashes, US air safety officials in mid-November cleared the MAX to return to service following changes to the plane and pilot training protocols.
Brazilian authorities have also okayed the MAX to fly again, while European officials are expected to approve the MAX’s return by the end of January 2021. China remains the main mystery as far as when it expects the MAX to fly again.
American Airlines plans an initial commercial flight on December 29.
The test flight Wednesday between American’s headquarters in Dallas and its maintenance center in Tulsa is intended to bolster public confidence in the jet.
The MAX had been a cash cow for Boeing prior to the Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines crashes that together claimed 346 lives. Those calamities plunged the aerospace giant into a crisis that