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After latest incident, Boeing executives race to reassure airlines as FAA grounds 171 MAX 9 jets

A 737 MAX at Boeing’s factory in Renton, Wash. The line of jets has encountered past troubles. The last thing Boeing needed was more trouble with its 737 MAX jet. That is exactly what it got to start the new year.

The company had just started to regain its footing after years of tumult around the popular but troubled line of narrow-body jets when a MAX 9 operated by Alaska Airlines had a structural failure Friday night.

A panel that plugs an emergency door ripped away at 16,000 feet leaving a gaping hole in a cabin full of passengers. The Federal Aviation Administration responded Saturday by ordering airlines to ground about 171 of the MAX 9 planes and to conduct inspections. The checks take about four hours and, if cleared, planes can return to service.

Jennifer Homendy, chair of the National Transportation Safety Board, said Saturday that its investigation is focused on the Alaska Airlines incident and isn’t looking more broadly at Boeing’s 737 MAX.

Excerpt from WSJ
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