FAA to propose Boeing 737 MAX directive; ungrounding not expected before October

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said on Tuesday it plans to issue a proposed airworthiness directive for the Boeing 737 MAX in the “near future” to address changes made since the plane was grounded in March 2019 after two fatal crashes killed 346 people.

An official briefed on the matter told Reuters that the FAA is unlikely to unground the 737 MAX before sometime in October. Boeing did not immediately comment but has said previously it expects to resume deliveries before Sept. 30 following regulatory approval.

The FAA said the public will have 45 days to comment on “proposed design changes and crew procedures to mitigate the safety issues identified during the investigations that followed the Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines accidents.” The FAA noted that there are still a number of key steps before the plane can resume commercial service.

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