Icelandic national flag carrier Icelandair is preparing to welcome three brand new Boeing 737 MAX aircraft in the space of a week. In a post on its Linkedin page, the Keflavík International Airport (KEF)-based airline said that it has already taken delivery of two aircraft in Seattle and will pick up a third this week.
Following the Icelandair tradition of naming aircraft after Icelandic natural wonders, the three new planes will be called Landmannalaugar (located in the Fjallabak Nature Reserve in the Highlands of Iceland), Kirkjufell ( the most photographed mountain in Iceland), and Langjökull (Iceland’s second-largest glacier) .
Boeing 737 MAX is praised by many airline to be more efficient than other aircraft, burns much less fuel and have a range that is greater than was first expected. But Aviation authorities around the world grounded the Boeing 737 MAX in March 2019 following two fatal crashes. Lion Air Flight 610 on October 29, 2018, and Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 on March 10, 2019. Following a lengthy investigation into the crashes, it was determined that they were caused by the aircraft’s new automated flight control, the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS).
Software fixes were made, and further pilot training was given, allowing the MAX to reenter service in the US in November 2020. Transport Canada and EASA followed the FAA’s lead, and both cleared the MAX to return to service in late January 2021.