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US Senate to hold hearing on air safety following Ethiopia plane crash

Posted at 7:31 PM, Mar 12, 2019

The Senate committee that oversees the US aviation industry will hold a hearing on air safety, following the weekend's deadly crash in Ethiopia, the chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation announced Tuesday.

"It is important to allow the FAA, NTSB and other agencies to conduct thorough investigations to ensure they have as much information as possible to make informed decisions," said Republican Sen. Roger Wicker of Mississippi in his statement. "Thousands of passengers every day depend on the aviation system to get them safely to their destinations, and we must never become complacent with the level of safety in our system. Therefore, the committee plans to hold a hearing reviewing the state of aviation safety to ensure that safety is maintained for all travelers."

The announcement of the hearing follows days of lawmakers asking questions about and some demanding the grounding of the Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft, which was not only the model of plane that crashed over the weekend but also was the same type of vessel that went down over the Java Sea last October in a separate deadly cash.

Democratic Sen. Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, who sits on the committee, said Tuesday he's told his family and others to switch planes rather than fly on the Boeing 737 MAX 8.