The aircraft manufacturer Boeing faces further questions over the safety of its 737 Max 8 jet as Ethiopian Airlines joined carriers in China and elsewhere in grounding the plane after a crash on Sunday that killed all 157 people onboard.
The cockpit voice recorder and the digital flight data recorder have both been recovered from the wreckage of Ethiopian Airlines flight ET302, the airline said on Monday, meaning the cause of the crash – as yet unknown – could be soon determined.
The Boeing 737 Max 8, on its way to Nairobi from Addis Ababa, crashed six minutes after takeoff, ploughing into a field near Tulu Fara village outside the town of Bishoftu, 40 miles south-east of the Ethiopian capital.
The disaster was the second involving the new aircraft in the past four months. In October, a crash involving the same kind of plane left 189 people dead in Jakarta, Indonesia.
More than 300 Boeing 737-MAX planes are in operation and more than 5,000 have been ordered worldwide since 2017.
The Civil Aviation Administration of China issued a notice at 9am local time ordering domestic airlines to suspend the commercial operation of the Boeing 737 Max 8 before 6pm.
Meanwhile, Cayman Airways president Fabian Whorms said both of the airline’s new Max 8s will not fly from today, Metro UK reports.
Boeing chief executive Dennis Muilenburg said on Sunday that the American firm is providing “technical assistance” to the Ethiopian government and regulatory authorities in their investigation.
Ethiopian Airlines also grounded its remaining Max 8 aircraft, although the cause of the crash was yet to be determined. Its chief executive, Tewolde Gebremariam, said the operator was “one of the safest” in the world.
Ethiopian Airlines said it had contacted the families of all victims, who came from 35 nations.