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India's Akasa Air orders 150 Boeing 737 Max jets amid increased U.S. scrutiny

Boeing and India's Akasa Air said Thursday Akasa is ordering 150 more 737 Max jets. The order comes as the FAA expanded its probe into the 737 Max 9 after one of them lost a door plug mid-flight, grounding the jet in the United States. File photo by Cityswift/Flickr
Boeing and India's Akasa Air said Thursday Akasa is ordering 150 more 737 Max jets. The order comes as the FAA expanded its probe into the 737 Max 9 after one of them lost a door plug mid-flight, grounding the jet in the United States. File photo by Cityswift/Flickr

Jan. 18 (UPI) -- India's Akasa Air on Thursday ordered 150 Boeing 737 Max jets as the company faces increased scrutiny over their production in the United States.

Boeing and Akasa Air announced the order at the the Wings India 2024 airshow, adding that the airline is also buying 737-10 and additional 737-8-200 Boeing aircraft for a total of 226 planes.

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"The lower carbon emissions of the 737 MAX family allow us to remain focused on sustainable operations, while also providing our environmentally conscious passengers with a more comfortable way to fly," said Akasa Air founder and CEO Vinay Dube in a statement.

Akasa's entire fleet is made up of 737s and Dube said the airline, which is the fastest-growing in India, can use the order to support its rapid domestic expansion as well as to add international routes in the coming months.

According to Boeing, the 737 Max variants will give Akasa Air additional capacity and range while cutting fuel consumption and carbon emissions by 20% over older-generation jets.

Boeing Chief Operating Officer Stephanie Pope said the increased 737 order from Akasa is a testament to the capabilities of the 737 Max family.

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"The efficiency and versatility of the 737-10 and 737-8-200 will support Akasa Air's expansion to meet soaring demand for air travel in the region for many years to come," Pope said in a statement.

However, in the United States, the FAA said Wednesday it will keep Boeing's 737 Max 9 jets grounded as it expands a probe into the door plug blow-out in flight and Boeing's production processes for the plane.

The expanded investigation includes scrutiny of manufacturing methods and production lines both at Boeing and subcontractor Spirit AeroSystems.

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