LONDON — The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has approved the repairs for an electrical issue that has affected around 100 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft, paving the way for their return to service.

Last month, Boeing notified the FAA to remove certain 737 MAX from service to address a manufacturing issue that could affect a backup power control unit. If not addressed, the FAA said that the issue “could affect the operation of certain systems, including engine ice protection, and result in loss of critical functions and/or multiple simultaneous flight deck effects, which may prevent continued safe flight and landing.”

United Airlines (UA) has already started repairs on affected aircraft after the FAA approved the fixes for the 737 MAX’s electrical issues. The type is also expected to return to American Airlines (AA) soon.

Boeing 737 MAX production line. Poto: Boeing

Comments from FAA, Boeing

Steve Dickson, the FAA Administrator, told yesterday to a US House of Representative panel overseeing transportation that he has “absolute confidence” in the safety of the Boeing 737 MAX, which is “performing as well or better overall than any other airplane out there in the aviation system right now,” describing the proposed solution to the current issue as “a pretty straightforward fix.”

In a statement sent to Airways, Boeing commented that “After gaining final approvals from the FAA, we have issued service bulletins for the affected fleet.” Boeing has also confirmed that it is providing support to its customers as they complete the fixes, while the company is completing the preliminary work required to resume the deliveries.”

Despite the problems that have affected the program, including a 20-month long grounding after two fatal crashes, the Boeing 737 MAX seems to regain momentum in sales. Earlier this year, Boeing scored new orders with Alaska Airlines (AS), Southwest Airlines (WN), and UA.

Featured image: Boeing 737 MAX 9 First Flight. Photo: Brandon Farris/Airways