March 13 (UPI) -- New Zealand joined the growing list of countries suspending service of the Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft following last week's Ethiopian Airlines crash that killed 157.
The Civil Aviation Authority of New Zealand said Tuesday night it's suspended all operation of the plane to and from the archipelago nation. The suspension will only affect Fiji Airways, its only carrier that flies the Max 8.
"This is a temporary suspension while we continue to monitor the situation closely and analyze information as it comes to hand to determine the safety risks of continued operation of the Boeing 737 Max to and from New Zealand," said Graeme Harris, director of New Zealand's Civil Aviation Authority.
The plane's next flight to the country was scheduled for Thursday, which Harris said gave the aviation authority enough time to review concerns.
More than 30 countries have so far grounded the Max 8, including the European Union and China. The United States has been a notable holdout. The Federal Aviation Administration has said the planes were airworthy.
"We understand that regulatory agencies and customers have made decisions that they believe are most appropriate for their home markets," the airline maker said Tuesday. "We'll continue to engage with them to ensure they have the information needed to have confidence in operating their fleets."
Boeing said the Federal Aviation Administration has not mandated further action. The company previously said it would make a software update for the Max 8 at the request of the FAA.
The Ethiopian Airlines crash is the second involving the Max 8 in less than six months. Nearly 200 people died in a crash last October involving Indonesia's Lion Air, which went down about 15 minutes after takeoff, similar to the Ethiopian airliner.