Boeing 737 Max 9 Is Back in Service | Airlines

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Passengers may feel wary about flying on a Boeing 737 Max 9, but incidents like the Alaska one are quite rare.

After three weeks of being grounded, the Boeing 737 Max 9 is returning to service.

The first Max 9 flight scheduled to take off in the U.S. is an Alaska Airlines one, set to depart on Friday from Seattle at 2:20 p.m. PT to San Diego.

The Federal Aviation Administration has grounded the Max 9 since January 5 after a door panel blew out from an Alaska jet just minutes after take-off. The grounding forced United and Alaska — the only two U.S. carriers that operate the plane — to cancel thousands of flights in January.

United said it expects to officially return the Max 9 back to service on Sunday, but may use the plane “as a spare either today or Saturday if needed.”

Alaska CEO Ben Minicucci said in a call with analysts on Thursday that he expected travelers to “have some questions and anxiety” about flying on the Max 9.

Alaska Airlines said Thursday the Boeing 737 Max 9 grounding will cost it $150 million and that it expects Boeing to reimburse it for the loss. “We fully expect to be made whole for the profit impact of the grounding,” Alaska CFO Shane Tackett said.

The Max 9 may be back in service, but the fallout is not over for Boeing. Major U.S. airline CEOs have publicly criticized the company and lawmakers in Washington are looking to investigate the planemaker’s quality lapses.

Which Airlines Fly Boeing’s Max 9?

In the U.S., only Alaska and…

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