Boeing under pressure as Australia and EU ground 737 Max

The fallout from the terrible crash of an Ethiopian Airlines 737 Max that killed all on board is putting huge pressure on Boeing to ground its 737-8 and 737-9 models while investigations continue.

The European Union and Australia have joined other countries in temporarily grounding the new plane, while the US Federal Aviation Administration “continues to review extensively all available data and aggregate safety performance from operators and pilots of the Boeing 737 MAX”.

“Thus far, our review shows no systematic performance issues and provides no basis to order grounding the aircraft. Nor have other civil aviation authorities provided data to us that would warrant action,” said acting FAA administrator Daniel K Elwell.

Meanwhile Boeing has reiterated its support for the 737 Max, saying it had “full confidence” in its safety.

“We understand that regulatory agencies and customers have made decisions that they believe are most appropriate for their home markets,” it said in a statement. “We’ll continue to engage with them to ensure they have the information needed to have confidence in operating their fleets.”

Boeing plans to update the Max’s software and change flight controls and training guidelines.

While no Australian airlines operate the model, Fiji Airways continues to operate it on flights into Australia.