Boeing will push back the official rollout of the 777-9 following the 10 March crash of a Boeing 737 Max 8 operated by Ethiopian Airlines.
“Boeing is deeply saddened by the Ethiopian Airlines flight 302 accident and our focus is on supporting our customer,” says the company in an email to FlightGlobal.
“In light of this, we are postponing the 777X external debut on March 13 and the related media events on March 14. We will look for an opportunity to mark the new plane with the world in the near future. There is no change in the plane's schedule/progress from this announcement. “
The event was set to take place on Wednesday 13 March at Boeing’s Everett plant in Washington.
The 777-9, which is the larger of the two GE Aviation GE9X-powered 777X family variants, is due to enter service in 2020.
Ethiopian Airlines flight ET302 crashed six minutes after takeoff from Addis Ababa on a flight to Nairobi, killing 149 passengers and eight crew. The aircraft, ET-AVJ, had been delivered just four months earlier.
This was second major air disaster involving the 737 Max 8. On 29 October 2018 a Lion Air 737 Max 8 aircraft crashed 12min after departing from Jakarta after experiencing severe flight control problems. The Lion Air jet was delivered less than three months before it crashed.
UPDATED: An earlier version of this story erroneously indicated that the rollout was to be delayed by a day. This was due to an editing error and has been corrected.