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Comair to continue to fly its Boeing 737 Max 8 'unless situation changes'

Workers service an Ethiopian Airlines plane. One of the airline's Boeing 737 Max 8 was involved in a fatal crash on Sunday. File photo.
Workers service an Ethiopian Airlines plane. One of the airline's Boeing 737 Max 8 was involved in a fatal crash on Sunday. File photo.
Image: Reuters/Amr Abdallah Dalsh

Aviation company Comair said on Monday it would continue using the Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft it took delivery of last month, unless it receives information that it needs to reassess the situation.

Questions have been raised about the safety of this aircraft model after a Nairobi-bound Ethiopian Airlines passenger jet crashed shortly after take off from Addis Ababa on Sunday, killing all 157 on board.

A similar model of the plane, operated by Lion Air, crashed into the Indonesian Java Sea in October last year.

Following the crash, Ethiopian Airlines announced it had decided to ground all its Boeing 737 Max fleet until further notice.

An Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737 passenger jet to Nairobi crashed early on Sunday March 10 2019, killing all 149 passengers. Here is what we know so far.

The Chinese civil aviation authority also ordered its carriers to ground the plane.

Comair, which operates in South Africa as British Airways and low-cost carrier kulula.com, took delivery of its first of eight Boeing 737 Max aircraft last month.

In a statement on February 27, Comair said the model was the latest incarnation of the most popular jet aircraft ever.

On Monday, Comair said its sympathies were with those affected by the tragedy of Ethiopian Airlines crash on Sunday, especially the families and loved ones of the deceased.

"We cannot speculate on the causes of this accident, or the Lion Air accident in October 2018, which only a full investigation will resolve.

"Comair will continue to monitor the various investigations by the relevant authorities and is in close contact with both Boeing and SA's Civil Aviation Authority," Comair said in a statement.

Comair said the 737 Max 8 was one of the most commonly used aircraft in many airlines today and that by November 2018, 330 of them were in operation globally.

"Our highly trained and experienced flight crew and engineers remain vigilant. If we receive information that requires us to reassess the situation, please be assured we will take appropriate action in the interests of the safety of our staff and customers."

Following the plane crash on Sunday, Boeing said its technical team would be travelling to the crash site to provide technical assistance under the direction of the Ethiopia Accident Investigation Bureau and the US National Transportation Safety Board.

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