Ethiopian Airlines Crash Updates: Ethiopia to Send ‘Black Boxes’ Abroad for Analysis – The New York Times

In addition to the countries ordering the grounding of the planes, at least 34 airlines have pulled their Max 8 aircraft.

Sunwing, a Canadian carrier, said on Tuesday that it was temporarily grounding its four planes, even though Canada’s government, like that of the United States, has not ordered the move.

In a statement, the company said the step was “unrelated to safety.” Instead, the airline said, the move was prompted by growing airspace bans by countries and “evolving commercial reasons.”

The Federal Aviation Administration in the United States has resisted pressure to ground the Max 8.

Nobody has grounded more Boeing 737 Max 8 jets than China. With its order on Monday that Chinese airlines idle their fleets of the beleaguered aircraft, 96 planes went out of commission.

How did that effect flying in China? Not a whole lot, even on the first day.

Chinese airline canceled 62 flights outright on Monday as a result of the grounding, according to VariFlight, an online tracking company. For another 288, it found substitute aircraft, while five flights were completed before the grounding took effect later on Monday.

That represents a minor ripple in what has become some of the busiest airspace in the world. According to Chinese safety regulators, last year an average of 15,000 flights took off every day. Chinese airlines represent 14 percent of global traffic, according to figures from Boeing, and could account for one-fifth in two decades’ time.

China has room for flexibility in other ways.

Flight delays are common in China, so airlines schedule fewer flights per day for each aircraft, leaving more available to potentially fill in. Air traffic controllers and the airlines themselves are highly cautious about allowing planes to fly in poor weather. The military controls most of China’s airspace and frequently closes large areas, resulting in more delays.

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