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Lion Air Technical Director Removed Following Orders from Transport Ministry

Lion Air has removed its technical director Muhammad Asif following an order from Indonesia’s transport ministry in the wake of a deadly plane crash, the airline said on Wednesday (Oct 31).

All 189 people on board flight JT610 are believed to have died after the Boeing 737 Max 8 crashed into the sea shortly after take-off from Jakarta’s Soekarno-Hatta International Airport on Monday.

The flight was headed for Pangkal Pinang, on Bangka island, about 400km away.

“Today we will remove Lion Air’s technical director from his duties,” the airline said in the statement.

The statement added that Muhammad Rusli will execute the role of the technical director in the mean time until further notice. It was not clear whether the removal was permanent or temporary.

State news agency Antara also added that several of the technicians were also relieved of their duties.

Indonesia’s transport minister ordered an inspection of all Boeing 737-MAX aircraft on Tuesday.

Lion Air managing director Daniel Putut said the airline had “many questions” for the Chicago-based company and they would discuss the delivery of remaining aircraft 737-MAX models, Indonesian news website tirto.id reported.

Lion Air, Indonesia’s biggest budget airline which has been engaged in huge expansion, announced earlier this year it was buying 50 Boeing-737 MAX 10 jets for US$6.24 billion.

Founded in 1999, Lion Air capitalised on a boom in Indonesia’s aviation industry, but has been plagued by safety woes and complaints over unreliable scheduling and poor service.

It has been involved in a number of incidents including a fatal 2004 crash and a collision between two Lion Air planes at Jakarta’s Soekarno-Hatta International Airport.

Source: Channel News Asia

Photo: Lion Air

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