The Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has suspended the operations of all the Boeing 737 aircraft in the fleet of Max Air over safety concerns after a series of incidents.
The suspension is with immediate effect, according to a letter by the regulator to the domestic airline.
The letter was dated July 12, 2023 and marked NCAA/DG/AIR/11/16/363. It was titled, ‘Suspension of Parts A3 and D43 of the Operations Specifications Issued to Max Air with Immediate Effect’.
The letter was signed by NCAA Director of Operations, Training and Licensing, Ibrahim Dambazau, on behalf of NCAA Director General, Capt. Musa Nuhu.
By implication, all domestic flights of the airline will be on hold until the suspension is lifted.
The letter reads: “The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) hereby suspends Parts A3 (Aircraft Authorization) and D43 (Aircraft Listing) of the Operations Specifications issued to Max Air Ltd. with regards to the operations of the Boeing B737 aircraft type in your fleet.
The letter read, “The Authority’s action is due to the several occurrences that involved your Boeing B737 aircraft as listed hereunder:
“Loss of Number 1 Main Landing Gear (MLG) wheel during the serious incident involving a Boeing 737-400 aircraft, registration marks 5N-MBD which occurred between Take-off at Yola Airport Adamawa State and on landing at Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja Nigeria on 7th May, 2023.
“Fuel Contamination of the main fuel tanks of aircraft B737-300, Registration Marks; 5N-MHM, leading to the Auxiliary Power Unit (APU) shutdown on ground Yola Airport on the 7th of July, 2023.
“Aborted take-off of Boeing 737-400 aircraft, registration marks 5N-MBD, which occurred at the Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport (MAKIA) due to high Exhaust Gas Temperature (EGT) indication on the 11th of July, 2023.
“An air return by aircraft B737-300, Registration Marks; 5N-MHM to Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport (NAIA) due to duct overheat indication in the cockpit on the 11th of July, 2023.
“The authority has constituted a team of inspectors to conduct an audit of your organization. The result of this audit, it said, must be found satisfactory by the Authority prior to considering the restoration of the privileges of the operations Specifications to your organisation to further operate the aircraft type.”