FAA halts production expansion and approves inspection instructions

Alaska Airlines N704AL is seen on the ground in a hangar at Portland International Airport in Portland, Oregon, on January 9, 2024.

Mathieu Louis Rolland | Getty Images

The Federal Aviation Administration on Wednesday halted Boeing's planned expansion of its 737 Max jets, but cleared the way for the manufacturer's Max 9 plane to return to service nearly three weeks after a door plug exploded on an Alaska Airlines plane.

“Let me be clear: This will not go back to business as usual for Boeing,” FAA Administrator Mike Whitaker said in a statement on Wednesday. He added: “We will not approve any request from Boeing to expand production or approve additional production lines for the 737 MAX until we are satisfied that the quality control issues revealed during this process have been resolved.”

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