Saturday, 23 February 2019

Norwegian finally get back 737 that was stranded in Iran

It has taken more than two months but finally, the budget carrier Norwegian has managed to get a stricken Boeing 737 Max aircraft out of Iran, after the plane diverted there last year.

On December 14th the jet had to divert to Shiraz in Iran after developing technical problems in one of its engines. At the time it was carrying 186 passengers and 6 crew,  who were able to leave the next day on a different Norwegian aircraft. 

The airline then struggled to get the right documents, approvals and parts into Iran to fix the aircraft and fly it out. The reimposed US sanctions slammed on Iran by president Trump stipulate no product containing more than 10% US parts or goods can be sent to Iran without a special licence.

However, a Norwegian spokesperson confirmed that its Boeing 737 MAX registration LN-BKE has taken off from Shiraz Airport in Iran and landed back at Stockholm Arlanda Airport just before 4am on Saturday morning.

The US government shutdown had also delayed the process significantly, however, planemaker Boeing and engine supplier General Electric finally got the licences needed from the US and were able to repair the aircraft.

It is understood that Norwegian are exploring legal avenues for compensation for lost earnings caused by the grounding of the brand new jet from Boeing and General Electric.