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Updated January 7th, 2024 at 12:46 IST

No passengers seated near 737 MAX 9 cabin that blew out: US agency NTSB

The emergency landing has led to several regulators in the US and other countries to take cognisance of Boeing MAX models in their fleet

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Sigh of relief: There were no passengers seated near the cabin panel that blew out on the Boeing 737 MAX 9 that made an emergency landing, the National Transportation Safety Board said on Sunday.

The airplane as part of Alaska Airlines fleet, which is eight weeks old, had to make an emergency landing on Friday.

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The chair of NTSB, Jennifer Homendy said the two seats next to the portion of fuselage that blew out were unoccupied.

"We are very, very fortunate here that this didn't end up in something more tragic," Homendy added.

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In the incident that has led to India’s DGCA taking cognisance, as well as Turkish Airlines also taking action among US and foreign regulators sending in queries, social media posts showed the cabin panel blowing out, causing no fatalities but severe injuries.

In the unfortunate incident following takeoff from Portland, Oregon, en route to Ontario, California on Friday, a piece of fuselage tore off the left side of the jet as it climbed for flying.

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Pilots were forced to turn back and land safely with all 171 passengers and six crew on board.

The Alaska Airlines jet had oxygen masks deployed and a portion of the aircraft's side wall missing, some social media posts shared reflect.

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A section of the fuselage reserved for the optional door had vanished, which left a door-shaped gap on the plane. The seat next to the panel, containing an ordinary window, was unoccupied.

The American planemaker has suffered numerous production issues on the MAX planes in the years since the crashes.

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A British air safety regulator said it would require any 737 MAX 9 operator to comply with the FAA directive to enter its airspace.

Panamanian carrier Copa Airlines said it had temporarily grounded 21 737 MAX 9 aircraft, saying it expects to return these aircraft “safely and reliably to the flight schedule within the next 24 hours." Some delays and cancellations are expected, it added.

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Published January 7th, 2024 at 12:14 IST

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