American Airlines plans to relaunch Boeing 737 Max in January

American Airlines has said it expects to re-launch flights on the Boeing 737 Max in January.

In a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission in the United States, the carrier said it anticipates impending software updates to the aircraft will lead to re-certification “later this year”.

American Airlines is one of three United States-based carriers – including United Airlines and Southwest – ordered by the FAA to all Boeing 737 MAX aircraft earlier this year.

The belated decision, following in the wake of authorities in China and Europe, followed two crashes in October 2018 and March 2019, which killed a total of 346 people.

American said it expects to slowly phase in the Max for commercial service and will increase flying on the aircraft throughout January and into February.

However, the Wall Street Journal has reported European authorities are taking a tougher line than their United States counterparts.

The European Union Aviation Safety Authority reportedly told the FAA they want more testing on fixes to the troubled 737 Max flight-control systems before the plane is cleared to re-enter service.

Plane manufacturer Boeing had initially scheduled the plane to re-enter service at the end of August.

Disagreements over software details, centred on how the dual flight-control computers on the plane are now intended to start working together, have put that date back to at least the end of November.

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