How KQ is planning to spend 120 Billion on Old-age and outlawed Boeing planes

Most passengers just develop cold feet when they hear that they are going to fly using Boeing Air planes following the deadly Ethiopian crush.

But Kenya Airways is not considering changing the supplier of the plane despite the fact that Boeing has been grounded globally after suffering two fatal accidents in a span of five months.

Kenya Airways is planning to order up to 10 of the planes worth an estimated Sh120 billion ($1.2 billion).

“The only option that we have planned for is the Boeing 737-800 Max because this will make it easier for us to conduct training and maintenance of the aircraft,” said Mr Joseph in an interview with a local newspaper.

“We hope that between now and the time when we are ready to acquire the new fleet, Boeing will have solved the current problem,” he added.

The US aviation giant has been racing to fix a software problem suspected to be the cause of the two crashes that killed 157 people in the Ethiopian Airlines accident this month and 189 people in an Indonesian carrier Lion Air crash five months ago. 36 of those killed in the Ethiopian crash were Kenyans.

Kenya Airways (KQ) has the option of buying more of the older 737-800 version of the Boeing aircraft that does not feature the suspect software, but this could see it lose the fuel efficiency associated with the new jet.

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Alternatively, KQ could switch to Airbus, but this would come with additional training costs for its pilots, crew and engineers.

The cash-strapped national carrier has plans to get rid of its two Boeing 737-700 jets before the end of the year.

Mr Joseph says maintaining the same fleet of Boeing jets is the most cost-efficient option for the national carrier, but that will depend on the manufacturer’s ability to fix safety concerns around the new 737-800 Max series.

The Boeing 737-800 Max jets were grounded across the world following the two air crashes.

Kenya Airways does not have the Boeing 737-800 Max on its fleet and is yet to make any firm orders. The plane has been credited for fuel efficiency and has been one of Boeing’s best-selling jets having delivered over 370 aircraft since 2017, with about 5,000 placed orders.

The fatal Boeing 737-800 Max crashes have been attributed to faulty sensors, which send wrong information to the aircraft’s computer.

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