The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) recently cleared the MAX 9 for service after conducting thorough inspections.Alaska Airlines stated that it anticipates completing inspections on its 65 MAX 9 planes by the end of next week, allowing the airline to resume its normal schedule.
The company emphasized that each MAX 9 aircraft will only return to service after passing the rigorous inspections and meeting FAA requirements for airworthiness. These individual inspections are expected to take up to 12 hours per aircraft.
Following an incident on January 5, where a door plug blew out mid-flight, the FAA grounded 171 MAX 9 planes that had a similar configuration. Although there were no serious injuries, inspectors noted that the situation could have been catastrophic.
As a result of the grounding, Alaska Airlines had to cancel 3,000 flights in January. The company estimates that it will incur a financial loss of $150 million due to the grounding.