By Adelaide Sirox Kari – EMTV News, Port Moresby
The Civil Aviation Authority of PNG has issues a safety and operation Directive banning any Boeing 737 Max 8 and Max 9 aircraft to conduct any flight in PNG Airspace from the 14th of March 2019 3pm local time.
The reason being in the interest of safety and operation and to protect the public following the accident of an Ethiopian Airlines Boeing Model 737-8 Max aircraft on 10th March 2019.
PNG adds on to more than a Dozen Countries banning 737 Max 8 aircrafts, this includes Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, China and Indonesia. With Fiji Airways and Samoa Airways the only two airline operator in the region that have 737 Max 8 and Max 9 on their fleet.
While Air Niugini is expected to add 4 737 Max 8 in 2020 and 2021, yesterday Air Niugini Managing Director Alan Milne confirming the order and also brushing off any scares.
“ If there is any changes needed to be done, it will be done before the aircrafts are delivered in 2020 and 2021.”
Meanwhile the Ministry for Civil Aviation issued a media release that they are closely monitoring the announcement from a number of aviation regulators in more than a dozen countries suspending the B737-8 Max aircrafts. The Civil aviation Minister Alfred Manase also directing the Director of Civil Aviation, Willson Sagati to contact Air Niugini to seek further information on their intention to purchase the 4 B737 Max .
Mr Sagati said the Boeing has been in touch with Air Niugini after both Lion Air accident and the recent Ethiopian Airlines accident. The statement stating that Air Niugini also advise the director that they continue to have the highest regard for Boeing products and will continue to work closely with them to keep abreast of any updates.