Costa Rica bans 737 Max 8 from its airspace
Costa Rica has joined more than 40 countries in temporarily banning Boeing’s 737 Max 8 aircraft, which was involved in two deadly crashes in less than six months, the Civil Aviation Authority (DGAC) announced Wednesday night.
According to DGAC, neither the 737 Max 8 nor the 737 Max 9 are permitted to operate in Costa Rican airspace until further notice.
“The General Director of Civil Aviation, Captain Guillermo Hoppe Pacheco, indicated that the decision is taken as a preventive measure, primarily for the safety of all passengers and crew, as a result of the recent accidents in which such aircraft were involved, whose causes are under investigation,” the statement from DGAC reads.
“The protection of human life is a priority, and until the circumstances of the accidents in which those airplane models have been involved are clarified, the measure will be maintained.”
Costa Rica’s decision came hours after the United States’ Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) issued an emergency order grounding the two 737 Max models in U.S. airspace. The FAA’s announcement put the United States in line with the majority of other countries in which the 737 Max 8 and Max 9 operate.
Boeing said it “has determined […] to recommend to the FAA the temporary suspension of operations of the entire global fleet of 371 737 Max aircraft.”
“We are supporting this proactive step out of an abundance of caution,” the airplane manufacturer said in a statement.
Neither Avianca Costa Rica nor Volaris Costa Rica include 737-series airplanes in their fleets. However, Southwest Airlines, American Airlines, United Airlines and Aeromexico all operate the 737 Max 8 or Max 9 and fly to Costa Rica.
The 737 Max series was developed by Boeing to succeed the 737 Next Generation (NG) series of the popular narrow-body aircraft. The first 737 Max-series airplane was delivered in May 2017.
In October 2018, a 737 Max 8 operated by Lion Air crashed minutes after takeoff near Jakarta, Indonesia. On Sunday, an Ethiopian Airlines 737 Max 8 crashed minutes after takeoff near Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
Both accidents remain under investigation.
This story was made possible thanks to The Tico Times 5% Club. If only 5 percent of our readers donated at least $2 a month, we’d have our operating costs covered and could focus on bringing you more original reporting from around Costa Rica. We work hard to keep our reporting independent and groundbreaking, but we can only do it with your help. Join The Tico Times 5% Club and help make stories like this one possible.
You may be interested
Costa Rica coronavirus updates for Monday, October 19Alejandro Zúñiga - October 19, 2020
Costa Rica announced 36 new coronavirus-related deaths since Friday for a total of 1,204, according to official data released Monday…
No road blockades reported as of late Monday morningThe Tico Times - October 19, 2020
The Public Security Ministry (MSP) on Monday reported no known blockades on Costa Rican roads and highways. At 11:35 a.m.…
We asked the Costa Rican Tourism Board your most pressing questionsAlejandro Zúñiga - October 19, 2020
Since August 1, Costa Rica has gradually allowed for tourists from select countries. Beginning in November, anyone who meets a…