Boeing’s deliveries slump amid 737 MAX crisis
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It’s no secret that 2019 was a rough year for Boeing, and now the company has released the numbers that show just how bad it was.
Last year, the manufacturer delivered only 380 jets to airlines, down from 806 in 2018. The shortfall was in large part because the 737 MAX was its best-selling models, and deliveries have been on hold since March 2019, when global regulators grounded the narrowbody workhorse following two crashes that left 346 people dead.
Orders for new aircraft also hit a 16-year low in 2019, and The Associated Press noted Boeing saw some major order cancellations as airlines like India’s Jet Airways went out of business.
By deliveries, Boeing is now far behind its European rival Airbus, which handed off 863 jets to customers in 2019.
Boeing has paused production of the 737 MAX as it works to address a software issue suspected of contributing to both accidents involving the aircraft.
The troubled jet’s saga has stretched into 2020, with a few major developments since the start of the year. First, Boeing reversed its long-held position that pilots should not need simulator training if they were certified to fly earlier versions of the 737. Then, a slew of internal communications were made public that called the company’s safety culture into question. And, on Tuesday, American Airlines announced another new delay to its plans to return its MAX jets to service, joining United in saying that the plane would remain off schedules until June. Southwest Airlines currently projects its MAXes returning by April, but regulators have not announced any official timeline for re-certifying the jets.
Featured photo by Stephen Brashear/Getty Images.