MAX 9 Aircraft FAA Action

MAX 9 Aircraft FAA Action

January 6, 2024 — Last night, Alaska Airlines Flight 1282 experienced an explosive decompression on climb out from PDX.  The incident could have been worse, but Flight Attendants and Pilots of Alaska 1282 ensured all passengers and crew arrived safely back on the ground. We commend the entire crew and our union is supporting them. 

Today, the FAA announced a temporary grounding of certain 737 MAX 9 that do not meet the inspection cycles specified in the Emergency Airworthiness Directive. Our union supports the FAA's quick and decisive action to ground certain 737 MAX 9s. This is a critical move to ensure the safety of all crew and passengers, as well as confidence in aviation safety. Lives must come first always.

FAA Emergency Airworthiness Directive (EAD)

Initial reports show that the plugged mid emergency exit door on the left-hand side of the aircraft aft of the wing is missing following the incident. The 737 MAX 9 has a spot for an extra pair of emergency exits, which are required on the aircraft with certain higher density configurations. Based on the seating configuration, airlines can choose to deactivate the exit and place a "plug" there instead. To passengers it appears as a window. 

The temporary grounding of the MAX 9 is leading to flight cancellations, and reassignments. Flight Attendants should review relevant sections of your contract for reassignment, hotel bookings, and return to base requirements.

We are closely monitoring and working with the Alaska and United AFA MECs, the affected airlines, the FAA, and the DOT to ensure that aircraft are not returned to service until they are deemed safe for all. AFA is also participating in the NTSB investigation and we support that process for full safety findings and actions.

Flight Attendants are aviation’s first responders — trained for emergencies, and we work every flight for aviation safety first and foremost. We fly only when it’s safe.

AFA EAP is always available to offer support to any Flight Attendant in need at (800) 424-2406.

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