The final Boeing 737 Max in British airspace has come into land after all the models over the UK were grounded today.
A TUI G-TUMB jet made its final approach into Manchester Airport this afternoon and touched down safely on the runway.
The jet had come from Alicante and was due to arrive in Manchester at 1.15pm, but landed at 3.35pm after leaving two hours and 20 minutes late.
Passenger flights using Boeing’s 737 Max plane have been banned from operating in the UK amid safety concerns following the Ethiopian Airlines disaster, which killed 157 people including nine Britons on Sunday.
The Civil Aviation Authority’s (CAA) ruling covers all commercial flights in UK airspace as a precautionary measure and will remain in place ‘until further notice’.
Malaysia, Singapore, Australia, China and Oman also grounded the plane. The same model was involved in another fatal crash in Indonesia in October.
As the restrictions were announced this afternoon, two Turkish Airlines aircraft – one bound for Gatwick and the other to Birmingham – turned back while flying over Europe on their way to Britain.
The last Boeing 737 Max coming into land at Manchester Airport today after all the jets were grounded following the Ethiopian air disaster
The plane came into land safely after travelling from Alicante two hours and 20 minutes late
TUI Airways has the only five Max 8 aircraft operated by a UK-based airline, and confirmed the planes have been grounded following the CAA’s decision.
Germany, France, Ireland, Italy, Belgium, Holland, Norway and Iceland are all expected to follow suit and ground the controversial jets.
A number of countries and airlines around the world have also grounded 737 Max 8 aircraft, which was the model involved when Ethiopian Airlines flight ET302 crashed shortly after taking off from Addis Ababa on Sunday morning.
TUI Airways has the only five 737 Max 8 aircraft operated by a UK-based airline, and confirmed the planes have been grounded following the CAA’s decision.
Ethiopian Airlines has grounded its four other 737 MAX 8 jets as a precaution and aviation authorities in China, Indonesia and others to temporarily suspend Boeing 737 MAX aircraft in and out of their airports.
Since the 737 Max was unveiled in 2017, 350 of the jets have been bought, with around a further future 4,761 orders placed.
More than 40 airlines around the world use the 737 Max, such as Norwegian Air, Air China, TUI, Air Canada, United Airlines, American Airlines, Turkish Airlines, Icelandair and FlyDubai.
A CAA spokesman said: ‘The UK Civil Aviation Authority has been closely monitoring the situation, however, as we do not currently have sufficient information from the flight data recorder, we have as a precautionary measure issued instructions to stop any commercial passenger flights from any operator arriving, departing or overflying UK airspace.’
Tui’s Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft are parked at a gate in the terminal of Manchester Airport today after Britain’s Civil Aviation Authority banned them from UK airspace
The UK Aviation Authority grounded all Boeing 737 Maxes after the Ethiopian crash on Sunday which killed 157 people
Malaysia, Singapore, Australia, China and Oman have all joined Britain in grounding the controversial Boeing 737 Maxes
Sunday’s disaster has caused alarm in the international aviation industry and wiped billions of dollars off the market value of the world’s biggest planemaker.
The United States will mandate that Boeing implement design changes by April, but said the plane was airworthy and did not need to be grounded.
A TUI UK spokesman said its customers will ‘travel on holiday as planned on other aircraft’.
Scandinavian airline Norwegian, which is the other major operator of 737 Max 8 aircraft in the UK, said it will not fly the planes ‘until advised otherwise’ by aviation authorities.
The carrier apologised to customers ‘who will be affected by temporary cancellations and delays’.
Brian Strutton, general secretary of pilots’ union Balpa, welcomed the CAA’s ruling.
‘Safety must come first,’ he said.
‘It is too early to know the cause of the latest crash and it is vital that air accident investigators carry out a thorough investigation to identify the cause so that measures to prevent future accidents can be put in place.’
TUI Airways has the only five Max 8 aircraft operated by a UK-based airline and the remaining three Manchester based flights will be operated on different aircraft
Workers collect clothes and other materials, under the instruction of investigators, at the scene where the Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737 Max 8 crashed shortly after takeoff on Sunday
The 737 Max 8 has also been grounded in China, Australia, South Korea, Singapore and Indonesia.
Boeing said in a statement it has ‘full confidence in the safety of the 737 Max’.
It went on: ‘We understand that regulatory agencies and customers have made decisions that they believe are most appropriate for their home markets.
‘We’ll continue to engage with them to ensure they have the information needed to have confidence in operating their fleets.
‘The United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is not mandating any further action at this time, and based on the information currently available, we do not have any basis to issue new guidance to operators.’
The Ethiopian Airlines crash was the second deadly incident involving the new model of Boeing passenger jet in less than five months, prompting concerns over its safety.
Nurses collect materials at the crash site today as identification of the 157 victims of the crash continues
The FAA said the planes were safe to operate, although it had a team on the ground in Ethiopia to assist with the investigation and was continuously assessing the safety performance of the aircraft.
This process is validated for European Union countries by the European Aviation Safety Agency (Easa).
The passengers killed in Sunday’s crash came from 35 nations, including 32 from Kenya and 18 from Canada.
The British victims included ‘soft and loving’ Joanna Toole, a United Nations worker from Devon, along with 55-year-old Joseph Waithaka, polar tourism expert Sarah Auffret, Sahra Hassan Said and Nasrudin Abdulkadir, a mother and son with dual Somali-British citizenship, and Sam Pegram, a 25-year-old from Lancashire.
United Nations worker Ms Toole, 36, was the first British victim to be named.
Mr Waithaka, 55, who lived in Hull for a decade before moving back to his native Kenya, also died in the crash, his son said.
The one Irish victim was named as Michael Ryan, a married father-of-two based in Rome with the UN’s World Food Programme, which distributes rations to people in need.
As many as 19 UN workers were feared to have been killed in the crash, the number being so high because of its environmental forum which started on Monday.
Still, major airlines from North America to the Middle East kept flying the 737 MAX. Southwest Airlines Co, which operates the largest fleet of 737 MAX 8s, said it remained confident in the safety of all its Boeing planes even as it fielded queries from customers.
And in Europe, Norway’s Civil Aviation Authority said it was confident of passenger safety on Norwegian Air’s fleet of 18 MAX jets, given dialogue to ensure it implemented training and other procedures after the October crash.