Dozens of transatlantic flights to and from Shannon Airport have been shelved as a result of the safety concerns regarding Boeing’s newest aircraft.
Passengers flying with two airlines, Air Canada and Norwegian Airlines, are instead being flown out of Dublin in a situation that looks set to run into the summer.
All Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft remain grounded after two fatal crashes involving this model of plane, including last month’s Ethiopian Airlines accident which claimed 157 lives, among them Lahinch engineer Micheál Ryan.
Boeing says it’s working on a software fix, but they’ve encountered delays, and even when the work is finished, the patch will have to be approved by regulators.
It means airlines who operate the Boeing 737 Max 8 are in a state of flux and have had to re-jig their schedules.
Here, this has seen Shannon lose out on over 200 planned outbound and inbound flights over the next three months.
Norwegian Airlines, who should be operating nine weekly transatlantic services from Shannon, will continue to fly passengers booked on those flights out of Dublin until the end of June.
Meanwhile, Air Canada is postponing the introduction of its four-time weekly flights to Toronto by a month.
It will now start in July and, again, passengers are being offered the option to fly via Dublin.
It’s estimated that the changes could see tens of thousands fewer passengers pass through Shannon.
A Shannon Airport spokesperson says the world-wide grounding of the 737 Max aircraft is having serious implications, including for its passengers and the Airport itself.
It’s continuing to work with the airlines to assist them in every way possible to aid the return of the services in due course.