American Airlines delays Boeing 737 MAX pilot training, union says

American Airlines delays Boeing 737 MAX pilot training, union says


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Economy1 hour ago (Oct 06, 2020 12:40PM ET)

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: American Airlines planes are parked at the gate during the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Washington

By Tracy Rucinski

CHICAGO (Reuters) – American Airlines (O:) has delayed plans to begin scheduling Boeing Co (N:) 737 MAX training for its pilots in November, the Allied Pilots Association said on Tuesday, as the grounded jet awaits regulatory approval to return to the skies.

Boeing is seeking approval from the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on a series of changes to the 737 MAX following two fatal crashes in 2018 and 2019 that triggered the aircraft’s global grounding. The FAA has also yet to determine new pilot training requirements for the jet.

Last month, American said its training plans could be canceled if the 737 MAX was not recertified.

“We have not made any definitive plans regarding the 737 MAX as the return to service timeline remains fluid,” an American Airlines spokeswoman said. “That’s why we recently adjusted the pilot training scheduling process and will continue to do so depending on when the MAX is recertified.”

She said American Airlines remains in contact with the FAA and Boeing on the recertification process, and continues to work in close collaboration with the pilots union.

Attempting to start MAX training for pilots in November seemed “a bit premature,” as we said recently, said Dennis Tajer, spokesman for the Allied Pilots Association, which represents American Airlines’ pilots.

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