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Statements of Ranking Members Sam Graves and Garret Graves on the FAA’s Ungrounding of the Boeing 737 MAX

Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure Ranking Member Sam Graves (R-MO) and Subcommittee on Aviation Ranking Member Garret Graves (R-LA) today commended the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) thorough review process that led to the agency’s determination to unground the Boeing 737 MAX.

“The United States is the gold standard in aviation, in part, because our system is designed to thoroughly, systematically, and thoughtfully address safety issues when they arise, and today’s action by the FAA is an example of that fact,” said Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure Ranking Member Sam Graves.  “Following the Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines tragedies, the FAA faced a difficult, closely scrutinized assessment of the contributing factors in these accidents and a determination of whether the aircraft could be safely returned to service.  The agency’s unprecedented efforts leading to this decision have been more rigorous than any such review in its history.  The bottom line is that the public will not fly if the system isn’t safe, and I have absolute confidence in the FAA’s careful determination that, after incorporating all the necessary updates and improvements, this aircraft is safe for the flying public. I want to personally thank the hardworking men and women at the FAA who dedicated their time and effort to this important process.”

“Public trust is the foundation of the United States’ aviation industry,” said Subcommittee on Aviation Ranking Member Garret Graves. “Following the Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines accidents, the FAA convened multiple expert panels to fully understand what led to these tragedies and applied a historically-rigorous process to ensure the highest level of confidence in safety going forward. Throughout this process, the FAA has been in communication with the families of the crash victims, and in close coordination with U.S. manufacturers, pilots, air carriers, and the international aviation community to ensure the greatest degree of success. I appreciate the work of all of these stakeholders and the work of the FAA to ensure that we come out of this experience having raised the bar even higher on our dedication to safety.”

Note: Yesterday, the House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved the bipartisan Aircraft Certification Reform and Accountability Act (H.R. 8408), legislation to incorporate recommendations from various nonpartisan expert reviews of the Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines accidents and strengthen the FAA’s aircraft certification process.  Sam Graves and Garret Graves are both original cosponsors of the legislation.

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