Budget airline Ryanair announced Wednesday that it will be closing bases in Nuremberg and Stockholm. The decision was brought about by the delayed delivery of the Boeing 737 Max airplanes.
The new model has been grounded for months over safety concerns, following the crash of two Boeing 737 Max planes within a few months of each other in 2018. In all, 346 people died in the crashes.
In a statement, Ryanair said it expects to receive 10 aircraft rather than the 20 that they originally ordered.
The airline, known as Europe’s busiest, will now expect to serve 156 million passengers next year, around 1 million fewer passengers than originally projected.
Ryanair anticipates reducing summer capacity in other bases as well and said it is “in discussions with our people, our unions, and our affected airports to finalize these minor reductions.”
The competition moves in
The 737 Max was supposed to replace many older Boeing models currently in use around the globe. But the model has remained on the ground since the 2018 crashes, which were at least partially caused by technical failures in the aircraft.
An October report by a panel of international aviation experts harshly criticized Boeing and the US Federal Aviation Administration for the design and certification of the new Boeing model.
The delay in clearing the 737 Max for flight has been a headache for many airlines as they seek to replace older models in their fleet. United Airlines announced Wednesday that it will replace several older models with new models from Boeing rival Airbus.