The FAA was prompted to ground all Boeing 737 Max aircraft after data found the flight paths of two planes which both crashed months apart were similar.
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration issued an emergency order grounding the planes Wednesday. On Tuesday it claimed it had no basis to ground the planes.
However it did a u-turn on Wednesday as new satellite data and evidence that showed the movements of the Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 were similar to those of Lion Air Flight 610,
The FAA was prompted to ground all Boeing 737 Max aircraft after data found the flight paths of two planes which both crashed months apart were similar
An Ethiopian Airlines flight crashed Sunday killing 157 people, shortly after taking off from Addis Ababa.
A Lion Air flight on a 737 Max 8 crashed in October in Indonesia, taking the lives of its 189 passengers and crew.
More than 40 countries, including the U.S., have now grounded the planes or refused to let them into their airspace.
Both planes struggled to maintain altitude in the minutes after takeoff.
Evidence found at the crash site outside the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa showed additional similarities.
Officials at Lion Air have said sensors on their plane produced erroneous information on its last four flights, triggering an automatic nose-down command that the pilots were unable to overcome on its final voyage.
Ethiopian Airlines CEO Tewolde Gebremariam said its pilots had received special training on how to deal with that problem, and Boeing sent further instructions for pilots after the Lion Air crash.
The FAA said new satellite data and evidence that showed the movements of the Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 were similar to those of Lion Air Flight 610. Pictured debris at the crash site of Ethiopia Airlines near Bishoftu
A Lion Air flight on a 737 Max 8 crashed in October in Indonesia, taking the lives of its 189 passengers and its crew. Pictured are investigators inspecting the wreckage
Rescue teams walk past collected bodies in bags at the crash site of Ethiopia Airlines near Bishoftu, a town some 60 kilometres on Sunday
Tewolde said he is confident the investigation will reveal that the crash is not related to the safety record of Ethiopian Airlines, widely seen as the best-managed in Africa.
Flight recorders from a doomed Ethiopian Airlines flight arrived in France for analysis Thursday as frustrated relatives of the people killed stormed out of a meeting with airline officials in Addis Ababa.
Former FAA assistant administrator Scott Brenner told CBS News the agency still should have waited for data from the Ethiopian jet’s black boxes before making its decision.
‘You’re grounding a class of aircraft base on nothing but political pressure. He said the FAA has ‘always been a very cooperative, data-driven group, and now that seems to have kind of gone to the wayside.’
Former FAA assistant administrator Scott Brenner, (pictured), agency still should have waited for data from the Ethiopian jet’s black boxes before making its decision
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration issued an emergency order grounding the planes Wednesday and also announced it in a tweet
Ethiopian investigators have now sent the black boxes to Paris to be analyzed — nearly three days after they were recovered from the crash site.
Former NTSB investigator Jeff Guzzetti claimed the investigation of the black boxes should have happened much sooner, and the fact that it didn’t is ‘negligent in my view.’
‘Time is of the essence,’ Guzzetti said.
Ethiopian officials originally asked Germany to analyze the black boxes, but the Germans lack the necessary software.
Men unload a case containing the black boxes from the crashed Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737 MAX 8 outside the headquarters of France’s BEA air accident investigation agency
A breakdown of how many Boeing 737 Max 8 planes are in operation in different countries
American Airlines has said it will start ferrying some of their Max planes back to their bases today.
Firm answers about what caused the crash could take months. The French air accident investigation authority, known by its French acronym BEA, said Thursday it will handle the analysis of the flight recorders, often referred to as a plane’s black boxes, retrieved from the crash site.
The BEA has experience with global air crashes, and its expertise is often sought whenever an Airbus plane crashes because the manufacturer is based in France.
A BEA official told The Associated Press that the recorders have already arrived in France but gave no time frame on how long the analysis could take.
The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board said it is sending three investigators to France to help with the downloading an analysis of the flight recorders.