Families of 737 Max crash victims say plane is still unsafe, demand public inquiry

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OTTAWA, Ill. — Families of Canadians killed in the Boeing 737 Max crash say the plane remains unsafe and should stay grounded, despite being cleared for takeoff by regulators in the United States.

Paul Njoroge, whose wife, three children and mother-in-law died in the March 2019 crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302, told the House of Commons transport committee Tuesday the aircraft is still "unstable."

He and Chris Moore, whose daughter was among the 18 Canadian citizens who lost their lives, are calling for an independent inquiry into Transport Canada's validation of Boeing's best-selling airplane.

Moore says Canadians deserve to know why Transport Canada did not take action even after issuing a letter of concern before the crash about the Max plane's anti-stall system, which safety regulators have said U.S. authorities failed to properly review.

Transport Canada said last week its recertification standards for the Max 8 diverge from those of U.S. regulators, including added procedures on the flight deck and differences in pilot training.

The Max planes have been grounded since March 2019 after the deadly crashes of a Lion Air flight near Jakarta in October 2018 and the Ethiopian Airlines flight less than five months later.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 24, 2020.

The Canadian Press