Door plug blowback: Boeing to give Alaska Airlines $61 million in credits for future purchases

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Alaska Airlines has received a promised additional $61 million in credits from Boeing, part of the compensation of the grounding of the Boeing 737 MAX-9s after one of the new aircraft lost a door plug on Alaska Airlines Flight 1282 in January, while in flight from Portland, Oregon to Ontario, California.

The credits are in addition to a cash payment of $162 million that Boeing made to Alaska Airlines in the first quarter of 2024.

The “supplier credit memos” were tucked into a regulatory filing last week. It gives Alaska Airlines $61 million in credits toward future purchases of Boeing aircraft. The $61 million in credit will not quite pay for half of the $128.9 million that a single 737 MAX 9 typically sells for.

Alaska voluntarily grounded all 65 of its MAX-9s after the incident, and the Federal Aviation Administration subsequently grounded the rest in service with other air carriers. The jets were out of service while safety checks were performed and missing bolts were put onto the door plugs, which are covers for doors that are not in use.

Alaska Airlines and Boeing are named in at least four lawsuits by passengers aboard Jan. 5’s Flight 1282. Both have told the court they are not responsible for the door plug blowout, which they say is the fault of Spirit AeroSystems, based in Wichita, Kansas, which builds the fuselages of the 737 MAX planes, andships them to Boeing’s factory in Renton, Washington.

Both Boeing and Alaska Airlines have had a rough first quarter of 2024 because of the incident, which brought into question the safety culture of Boeing. Alaska Airlines has a fleet made up of 230 Boeing 737 aircraft, with an average age of 10 years; and 85 Embraer 175 aircraft with an average age of 5.1 years.

2 COMMENTS

  1. And it all goes out to the lawsuits cueing up against AA.

    Or more specifically, the lawyers running the lawsuits against AA.

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