SpiceJet will be taking four Boeing 737 MAX planes that were previously operated by the now-defunct Jet Airways, as the no-frills airline continues with its expansion plan. With 13 SpiceJet MAX aircrafts grounded globally, the Airline has inked in a pact for leasing as uncertainty continues over the return of its own MAX flights.
Addressing SpiceJet’s AGM on Monday, it’s Chairman and Managing Director Ajay Singh said that another 10-12 Boeing MAX is ready for delivery to the airline in the US, adding onto its current fleet of 13 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft. However, with the almost 13 Max aircraft grounded globally, the Boeing 737 has been barred from flying since march this year in the wake of two deadly crashes involving the same.
DGCA and FAA are cracking down on Boeing 737s globally
With both the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) cracking down on the wings and body frame, India’s aviation regulator has ordered checks on 23 Boeing 737s of SpiceJet, Air India Express and Vistara. A Boeing spokesperson said that “safety and quality are our top priorities Boeing has notified the FAA and been in contact with B737 NG operators about a cracking issue discovered on a small number of aeroplanes undergoing modifications.
No service issues have been reported”. Even though officials have declined to specify whether India will be among the first few countries to allow Boeing 737 Max to fly again, there are indications of the DGCA waiting till a sufficient number of countries allow the MAX to start operations again before allowing it to fly again on Indian skies.
However, with a rather optimistic attitude, SpiceJet aims to have a strong performance in the coming year on the back of the massive fleet expansion, especially with the likely return of the grounded 737 MAX aircraft by the end of the calendar year 2019.