An Air Canada Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft is shown next to a gate at Trudeau Airport in Montreal on March 13, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes

Canadian airlines to feel pinch of Boeing 737 Max 8 production halt

Plane was supposed to make up a quarter of Air Canada’s narrow-body fleet by end of 2019

Boeing Co.’s suspension of the 737 Max production line will mean further headaches for Canadian airlines, which were counting on the grounded jetliner to carry more passengers and boost profit margins.

The Chicago-based aerospace company announced Monday that it will temporarily stop producing its grounded 737 Max jet starting in January as it struggles to get approval from regulators to put the plane back in the air.

Robert Kokonis, president of Toronto-based consulting firm AirTrav Inc., says the manufacturing delay is likely “crimping expansion” at Air Canada, WestJet and Sunwing.

Boeing’s marquee aircraft was slated to make up one-quarter — 36 planes — of Air Canada’s narrow-body fleet by the end of this year, with 14 more initially scheduled to arrive in 2020.

The grounding, implemented in March after a pair of fatal plane crashes within five months, forced Air Canada and WestJet to cancel some routes and lease less fuel-efficient aircraft. The two airlines have scrubbed the jetliner from their schedules until February.

WestJet spokeswoman Lauren Stewart says the airline, which had been expecting four more Max 8s by 2021, will work with Boeing to review future deliveries after regulators green-light the aircraft.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Schools ramp up contact efforts with students

Efforts of school district employees called “extraordinary”

North District RCMP see massive spike in domestic calls

Connection to COVID-19 pandemic likely for reduced call volume, increased severity

Northwest mines lengthen crew rotations in response to COVID-19

Northern Health confident precautions sufficient enough to keep work camps open

Coastal GasLink gives $100K to United Way efforts in Northern B.C.

Organization’s COVID-19 Relief Fund benefits seniors in isolation, among others

COVID-19: Trudeau says 30K ventilators on the way; 3.6M Canadians claim benefits

Canada has seen more than 17,000 cases and at least 345 deaths due to COVID-19

COMMENTARY: Knowing where COVID-19 cases are does not protect you

Dr. Bonnie Henry explains why B.C. withholds community names

As Canadians return home amid pandemic, border crossings dip to just 5% of usual traffic

Non-commercial land crossing dipped by 95%, air travel dropped by 96 per cent, according to the CBSA

B.C. wide burning restrictions come into effect April 16

‘Larger open burns pose an unnecessary risk and could detract from wildfire detection’

B.C. secures motel, hotel rooms for COVID-19 shelter space

Community centres, rooms reserved for pandemic self-isolation

Look at hospitalizations, not recovery stats for COVID-19, B.C. professor says

Cases in hospital are a definitive count of people who have the novel coronavirus

B.C. First Nations want to launch fight of Trans Mountain pipeline approval

Last month, the Supreme Court of Canada decided not to hear five challenges about the pipeline

N95 masks on the way for Canada after 3M reaches deal with White House

The Trump White House had ordered 3M to stop shipping masks to Canada

Most Read