UK joins others in grounding Boeing 737 Max

The crashed Ethiopian Airlines Airbus 737 Max 8

The UK’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has banned the Boeing 737 MAX from operating in or over UK airspace “as a precautionary measure”.

The decision comes after an Ethiopian Airlines plane crashed on Sunday, killing 157 people on board. It was the second fatal accident involving the 737 Max 8 model in less than five months.

In the aftermath of the accident, Ethiopia, Singapore, China, France, Ireland, Germany, Australia, Indonesia and Malaysia have all temporarily suspended the 737 Max.

However, US officials say the aircraft are still safe to fly.

In a move that was welcomed by British pilots, the CAA said the directive would remain in place until further notice.

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In a statement, it said it took the decision because it did not currently have “sufficient information” from the flight data recorder about the fatal crash.

Tui Airways and Norwegian both operate the Boeing Max 8 in the UK as part of their fleets.

One Turkish Airlines flight to Birmingham turned around and returned to Istanbul.

A Tui statement confirmed their 737 Max 8 aircraft were grounded.

“Any customers due to fly home today on a 737 MAX 8 from their holiday will be flown back on another aircraft,” it read.

“Customers due to travel in the coming days will also travel on holiday as planned on other aircraft.”

Norwegian said it had also suspended flights of the aircraft and apologised for the inconvenience to passengers.

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