American Airlines extends Max-caused cancellations to June 5

Airline acknowledged that the prolonged cancellations could bring disruption for some travellers

In a March 13, 2019 file photo, an American Airlines Boeing 737 MAX 8 sits at a boarding gate at LaGuardia Airport in New York. American Airlines said Sunday, April 7, 2019 it is extending by over a month its cancellations of about 90 daily flights as the troubled 737 Max plane remains grounded by regulators. The Boeing-made Max jets have been grounded in the U.S. and elsewhere since mid-March, following two deadly crashes in Ethiopia and Indonesia. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II, File)

American Airlines is extending by over a month its cancellations of about 90 daily flights as the troubled 737 Max plane remains grounded by regulators.

American said Sunday it is extending the cancellations through June 5 from the earlier timeframe of April 24. The airline acknowledged in a statement that the prolonged cancellations could bring disruption for some travellers.

READ MORE: Boeing cutting production rate of troubled 737 Max jet

The Boeing-made Max jets have been grounded in the U.S. and elsewhere since mid-March, following two deadly crashes in Ethiopia and Indonesia. Airlines that own them have been scrambling other planes to fill some Max flights while cancelling others.

American Airlines Group Inc., the largest U.S. airline by revenue, has 24 Max jets in its fleet. The Dallas-based airline said it is awaiting information from U.S. regulators, and will contact customers affected by the cancellations with available re-bookings.

Boeing and the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration said last week the company needs more time to finish changes in a flight-control system suspected of playing a role in the two crashes. That means airlines could be forced to park their Max jets longer than they expected.

American said Sunday that by cancelling the flights in advance, “we are able to provide better service to our customers with availability and re-booking options,” and to avoid last-minute flight disruptions.

American’s reservations staff will contact affected customers directly by email or phone, the airline said. “We know these cancellations and changes may affect some of our customers, and we are working to limit the impact to the smallest number of customers,” the statement said.

Boeing said Friday that it will cut production of the Max jet, its bestselling plane, underscoring the mounting financial risk it faces the longer the airliner remains grounded.

Starting in mid-April, Boeing said, it will cut production of the plane to 42 from 52 planes per month so it can focus on fixing the flight-control software that has been implicated in the two crashes.

Preliminary investigations into the deadly accidents in Ethiopia and Indonesia found that faulty sensor readings erroneously triggered an anti-stall system that pushed down the plane’s nose. Pilots of each plane struggled in vain to regain control over the automated system.

In all, 346 people died in the crashes. Boeing faces a growing number of lawsuits filed by families of the victims.

The announcement to cut production came after Boeing acknowledged that a second software issue has emerged that needs fixing on the Max — a discovery that explained why the aircraft maker had pushed back its ambitious schedule for getting the planes back in the air.

Marcy Gordon, The Associated Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

PHOTOS: Vancouver Island MusicFest revisited

This year’s lineup included Colin James, Tom Cochrane and lots more

Peninsula Co-op hosting matching gift campaign for BC Cancer Foundation

Company will match donations up to $75,000 for Vancouver Island residents battling cancer

Comox Valley military museum could be closed for a couple of months

HMCS Alberni site suffered water damage during a recent downpour

Injured humpback returns to waters off Comox a year later

Photographer spotted Ocular again and noticed the whale has been healing

Feds lowered poverty line, reducing the number of seniors in need: documents

Liberals introduced a poverty line that was below the prior low-income cutoff

$900M settlement reached in class action on sexual misconduct in Canadian military

After facing criticism, the government moved to begin settlement proceedings in early 2018

Tax take stays ahead of increased B.C. government spending

Tax revenue $2.1 billion higher than budget in 2018-19

Two toddler siblings found drowned on First Nation in Alberta

The siblings were found drowned on their family’s property, according to RCMP

Chiefs honour Indigenous leader wrongfully hanged in B.C. 154 years ago today

Chief Joe Alphonse says they want his remains returned to his homeland in B.C.’s Cariboo region

B.C. government seeks advice on reviving Interior forest industry

Public website opens as meetings start with community leaders

Film features Chez Monique, an off-the-grid restaurant on West Coast Trail in B.C.

“The story we are trying to share is of the loving haven they created and sustained for decades.”

Psychics, drones being used to search for missing Chilliwack woman with dementia

Drones, psychics, dogs and more have been employed to help find Grace Baranyk, 86

Most Read