BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — Concerns are growing about the Boeing 737 Max 8 jet after two crashes in the last six months each left more than 150 people dead.
Several countries have grounded the planes, and some lawmakers are calling for the FAA to stop them from flying in the U.S.
A spokesperson at Birmingham Shuttlesworth International Airport tells CBS 42 that Southwest airline flies the model through Birmingham. So it is possible travelers could encounter it, if not here, then in other cities across the country.
Homewood resident Jeffery Scheurich said he was sad when he initially heard about the most recent crash, which happened Sunday.
“It is a little concerning knowing that I was flying out this morning, so that was my initial reaction,” he told CBS 42 Tuesday. “But I would say I’m not too concerned about it because I know they go through rigorous testing processes.”
Scheurich said he likely won’t actively avoid the 737 Max 8 when he’s traveling. Others also said it wouldn’t affect their travel plans, including Tuscaloosa resident Gloria Gardner. CBS 42 asked her what she thought when she heard about the crash.
“I was really concerned,” she said. “But then I thought they haven’t been crashing that much in the United States, so I said I’m going to still travel.”
David Lendon of Tupelo, Miss. says he flies at least every other week, and the news of the crashes won’t affect him.
“I fly all the time, so I don’t worry too much about it,” he said.
Boeing released the following statement Tuesday in response to the growing concerns about the jet:
“Safety is Boeing’s number one priority and we have full confidence in the safety of the 737 MAX. We understand that regulatory agencies and customers have made decisions that they believe are most appropriate for their home markets. We’ll continue to engage with them to ensure they have the information needed to have confidence in operating their fleets. The United States Federal Aviation Administration is not mandating any further action at this time, and based on the information currently available, we do not have any basis to issue new guidance to operators.”