Major endorsement for Boeing 737 MAX by largest pilot union

by Airline Ratings Editors
May 10, 2019
737 MAX
The 737 MAX

In a major endorsement for the changes made by Boeing to the 737 MAX the world’s largest pilots’ union will not ask the US regulator the FAA to require additional mandatory simulator training on the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS) scenarios before pilots can fly the aircraft again.

According to Aviation Week, The Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA) will just recommend scenario training as part of routine recurrent training.

Aviation Week says that ALPA “will make its views known in comments on a draft of proposed minimum 737 MAX training standards out for public comment. The Flight Standardization Board (FSB) draft report does not recommend simulator sessions as part of transition training for 737 Next Generation pilots upgrading to the 737 MAX, opting for less costly computer-based training instead.”

READ: Women kicked off plane after ignoring safety briefing 

It adds: “A person with knowledge of ALPA’s comments tells Aviation Week that the pilots’ union will go a step further, calling for hands-on simulator training at the earliest scheduled opportunity. Under this scenario, MAX pilots would fly simulated MCAS-related scenarios within a year or so as MAX simulators become available, but not before they return to line operations once flight restrictions on the model are lifted. Some regulators are expected to require simulator training as conditions for removing their operations bans, and Air Canada has said it is already using its MAX simulator—the only one in airline hands in North America—to run its 420 MAX pilots through MCAS-related scenarios.”

READ Aviation Week’s full story here.


  1. Safety should be the ONLY consideration here. Simulator training should be mandatory for all crews before the MAX is returned to service carrying the fare paying public. Pilots should be given a simulator training and check session dealing specifically with AOA and MCAS failures in a high workload environment such as a night takeoff, high density altitude, max take off weight, busy ATC workload, complex SID, busy airspace with high radio traffic.