Air Canada cancels flights after U.K. closes airspace to Boeing 737 Max 8

by - 2 min read

Air Canada cancels flights after U.K. closes airspace to Boeing 737 Max 8

by - 2 min read


Air Canada has cancelled multiple scheduled flights to London after the U.K. closed its airspace to Boeing 737 Max 8s, the type of plane involved in last weekend’s deadly crash in Ethiopia.

France, Germany and Ireland all followed the U.K.’s lead and also closed their airspace to that specific type of aircraft Tuesday.

Air Canada Flight 860 was scheduled to leave Halifax on Tuesday night, bound for London’s Heathrow Airport. But early Tuesday afternoon, Air Canada changed the status of the flight on its website, showing it is now cancelled.

The airline also cancelled Flight 822, scheduled to leave St. John’s for Heathrow on Wednesday night. 

In a statement, Air Canada said it was working to rebook affected customers as soon as possible through its Montreal, Toronto and Ottawa hubs. It also said impacted customers could rebook their flights free of charge. 

The airline said it is confident in the safety of its operations and fleet. 

Federal Transport Minister Marc Garneau said it would be “premature” to ground all 41 of those planes currently owned by Canadian air carriers.

He reiterated Tuesday there are no plans to follow the example of the U.K. in suspending the jet from Canadian airspace.  

Canada’s two largest airlines have also previously said they are confident in the safety of the aircraft:

  • Air Canada said its 24 Max 8 aircraft have performed “excellently” and met safety and reliability standards.
  • Calgary-based WestJet said it is “working with Boeing to ensure the continued safe operation of our Max fleet,” which includes 13 Max 8s.

Sunday’s Ethiopian crash is the second such deadly incident for a Boeing 737 Max 8 model in less than six months. In October, a Lion Air plane crashed into the Java Sea just minutes after takeoff from Jakarta, killing 189 aboard. 

This story originally appeared on CBC