United Airlines cancels all 737 Max flights through early July

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United Airlines cancels all 737 Max flights through early July

Katherine Frey| The Washington Post | Getty Images
The last United Airlines 747 is greeted by water cannons after it makes its final landing at Dulles International Airport October 19, 2017 in Dulles, VA.

United Airlines has extended cancellations of the Boeing 737 Max through early July, following similar moves by other major airlines coping with the jet’s prolonged grounding.

American Airlines said Sunday it will cancel all Max flights through Aug. 19. On Friday, Southwest Airlines removed the Max jet from its schedule through Aug. 5. United had previously cancelled Max flights through June 5.

The widespread cancellations come after the Max’s anti-stall software was implicated in two fatal crashes in Ethiopia and Indonesia since October.

United said that has tried to minimize the impact of the mid-March grounding by using other spare aircraft. But the peak summer travel season made those changes too difficult, the company said. The airline operates a fleet of 14 Boeing 737 Max 9 aircraft.

“Moving forward, we’ll continue to monitor the regulatory process and nimbly make the necessary adjustments to our operation and our schedule to benefit our customers who are traveling this summer,” United said.

Boeing has slowed production of the Max and plans to submit a software fix to the Federal Aviation Administration in the next couple weeks. Boeing’s CEO said it’s completed 96 flights totaling over 159 hours of air time with its new fix.

Investigators and lawmakers have scrutinized the airplane maker’s software system malfunction, from the original design to the training and safety certifications.

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