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United Airlines Moves Its Grounded 737 MAX to Aircraft Graveyard

With no end in sight to the Boeing 737 MAX ground order, United Airlines has a plan to preserve the aircraft. The airline will be moving their 14 to a state often associated with aircraft graveyards: Arizona.

Because the ground order on Boeing’s 737 MAX aircraft remains, United Airlines wants to do everything they can to preserve their inactive aircraft–and plan on doing that by sending them to a very dry location. CNBC reports the Chicago-based carrier will move all of their 737 MAX airframes to Arizona.

United currently has 14 737 MAX 9 aircraft in their fleet, with orders for over 120 more to be added in the future. These are not to be confused with the 737 MAX 8, on which the two fatal accidents occurred.

To move the aircraft, United sought special permission from the Federal Aviation Administration to fly the MAX outside of the ground order. Until recently, the airframes were stored at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) and Houston George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH). But with hurricane season upcoming and continued construction in Los Angeles, the airline decided their aircraft would be safer in the desert.

Arizona is home to the 309th Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in Pima, better known as one of the “Aircraft Boneyards” in the southwest. While United has not specified where in Arizona the aircraft are going, the region is popular for aircraft storage due to its dry climate and predictable weather.

While United is hopeful the aircraft could fly again by November 2019, the carrier says moving the flights to the desert do not change any of their plans. Other airlines are not as hopeful: Southwest Airlines has cut 20 nonstop services due to the 737 MAX grounding and stated their impacted fleet won’t fly again until 2020.


[Featured Image: YouTube/ Gung Ho Vids]

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