By Ovunc Kutlu
ANKARA (AA) - The US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said Wednesday it cleared Boeing's 737 MAX airplane to fly after grounding flights for 20 months following two fatal crashes.
The regulator will allow the aircraft to return to commercial service with certain conditions.
The FAA released design changes that must be made before service resumes and issued a list of notifications and training requirements.
Boeing must also approve 737 MAX pilot training program revisions for each US airline operating the aircraft, in addition to forcing airlines that have parked MAX aircraft to take required maintenance steps to prepare for flights.
"The design and certification of this aircraft included an unprecedented level of collaborative and independent reviews by aviation authorities around the world," the statement said. "Those regulators have indicated that Boeing’s design changes, together with the changes to crew procedures and training enhancements, will give them the confidence to validate the aircraft as safe to fly in their respective countries and regions.”
The FAA said it will continue to work closely with foreign civil aviation administrations to further evaluate the 737 MAX.
The US House of Representatives blasted Boeing and government regulators in a 250-page report in September after 18 months of investigations on the fatal crashes that rocked air travel in early 2019, saying the aircraft had "serious flaws and missteps in the design, development, and certification."
One of the planes crashed Oct. 29, 2018, into the Java Sea in Indonesia, killing all 189 passengers and crew, while another crash March 10, 2019, in Ethiopia killed 157 people.
In the wake of the Ethiopia crash, all 737 MAX aircraft were grounded worldwide.
Shares of Boeing jumped 6.4% on the New York Stock Exchange at the opening bell.