Mar 22, 2019

Indonesian airline cancels $4.9 billion order for 737 MAX 8 jets

A Boeing 737-800 passenger plane belonging to Garuda Indonesia lands at Hong Kong International Airport. Photo: Marcio Rodrigo Machado/S3studio/Getty Images

Indonesian airline Garuda is seeking to cancel the remainder of its $4.9 billion order for 48 more Boeing 737 MAX 8 jets, after at least 40 countries suspended the jets' operation due to 2 fatal crashes of the brand new aircraft in the last 6 months, the New York Times reports.

The big picture: Garuda's pullout is the latest blow to Boeing, as the loss of 2 brand new aircraft in 6 months has no precedent in modern aviation history and has threatened one of the company's main sources of revenue. Multiple investigations are now underway into how the 737 MAX was certified, including the Inspector General's office at the U.S. Transportation Department, the FBI, a federal grand jury and House and Senate committees.

In its most recent communication to airlines on Wednesday, the FAA said Boeing is working on a software fix that may address the cause of both crashes, but gave no timetable for its introduction and rollout.

Our thought bubble, per Axios' Andrew Freedman: It's not easy for an airline to cancel an aircraft order without paying penalties, and Garuda will have to negotiate with Boeing going forward. But this cancellation is noteworthy since the airline has a checkered safety history, having had multiple crashes in the past decade. So if they're bailing on the 737 MAX, it could encourage carriers with a better reputation to rethink their plans too.

Go deeper: Canada, Europe to conduct own reviews into Boeing 737 Max jets

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Mass shooting in Milwaukee: What we know

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett in 2012. Photo: John Gress/Corbis via Getty Images

Six people died in a shooting at the Molson Coors Brewing Company in Milwaukee on Wednesday, including the gunman, Mayor Tom Barrett told reporters at a Wednesday evening press conference with local police.

Details: All of the victims worked at the brewery complex, as did the shooter who died of "an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound," police confirmed in a statement late Wednesday.

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Coronavirus updates: South Korea case count tops 2,000

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

33 people in California have tested positive for the coronavirus, and health officials are monitoring 8,400 people who have recently returned from "points of concern," Gov. Gavin Newsom said Thursday.

The big picture: COVID-19 has killed more than 2,850 people and infected over 83,000 others in some 50 countries and territories. The novel coronavirus is now affecting every continent but Antarctica, and the WHO said Wednesday the number of new cases reported outside China has exceeded those inside the country for the first time.

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Syria's darkest chapter

Family room without a family, in Idlib. Photo: Muhammed Said/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The worst humanitarian crisis of Syria’s brutal civil war is colliding today with what could be the war’s most dangerous geopolitical showdown, after at least 29 Turkish troops were killed in an airstrike.

The big picture: The fighting is taking place in Idlib in northwest Syria, where a ferocious Syrian and Russian offensive has displaced 1 million civilians and infuriated Turkey, which borders the region.

Go deeperArrow6 hours ago - World