Max 8 aircraft are safe, say local pilots

| 04/02/2021 | 96 Comments
Cayman News Service
CAL Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft

(CNS): The Cayman Airline Pilots Association (CAPA) has endorsed the return of Cayman Airway Ltd’s Boeing 737 Max 8 planes to the skies. The CAPA said the changes made during the time they have been grounded make it a very different aircraft. With the significant safety enhancements and scrutiny of this aircraft, they believe it is now the safest in the world.

And as CAL pilots undergo more training than required under international regulations, their association said the travelling public can rest assured that it is safe to get on board these planes.

Cayman Airways is about to place the Max 8s back in service following clearance from the Civil Aviation Authority of the Cayman Islands (CAACI), and in advance of that CAPA released a statement telling the public they believe the planes are now safe and that the pilots have maintained the training levels to fly them.

Management at the airline has said it is planning to begin flying from the middle of this month and the ‘Return To Service (RTS)’ plans will be released in the coming days.

“It is our professional opinion that a well trained and competent crew will only add to the layers of safety now mandated by the recertification process,” CAPA said in the public statement. “During the 22 months that this aircraft was grounded our members continued to be simulator-trained on this aircraft.”

The pilots noted that their members undergo general flight training every six months, which exceeds that given by many airlines, which in some cases train as little as once every 18 months.

This will hopefully provide further public reassurance about flying with Cayman Airways following international media reports this week that some US pilots are forgetting how to fly after being out of the cockpit for so long because of the pandemic.

According to the NASA Aviation Safety Reporting System, pilots are getting rusty and making basic errors because they are not flying as much, reports made to the voluntary self-reporting system showed. Pilots’ mistakes included flying at the wrong altitude, missing basic but important checks, such as forgetting to turn on the de-icer, and making wrong turns.

See the full statement from CAPA in the CNS Library.

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Comments (96)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Can someone detail what additional training the Cayman Airways pilots have had on this aircraft, and how they are going to bring the currency up? Not flying for nearly two years isn’t great on skill retention, and one of the criticisms of the max was the pilots were not sufficiently trained by Boing in the first place.

  2. Anonymous says:

    most professional pilots and best crew of any airline flying here – just remember Ivan the other airlines were nowhere to be seen and KX flew out thousands of visitors at no cost to the passengers – some crew had no roof on their homes to go home to and just got on with their work. We need KX so please use it when we can or we risk losing it

  3. Anonymous says:

    Ha ha hee hee, we going to
    Live until we die, that’s for sure, so no worry about it, l o l

  4. Anonymous says:

    That’s what Boeing said before the two disasters. Get rid of the Max 8 and train your pilots on Airbus!

    • Anonymous says:

      LOL, you need to get a life out there. A good friend of mine in the UK is a retired BA engineer and he says the daftest thing that airline ever did was switch from the B737 and B757 to the A320-series. Apparently they’re a maintenance nightmare that gets ever more cranky as they get older. In 2019 they had over 100 reported smoke/fume events on the A320-series fleet, several of them potentially very serious.

    • Anonymous says:

      Airbus is the real reason Air Jamaica ran into the ground. Fantastically high maintenance rates that no airline can afford. Check out the Boeing percentage of European Airlines.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Sorry, but if you believe what these guys say you are misguided. So biased towards Boeing that they are called the ‘Boeing boys’.
    Fact is that the company has acted in a quite disgraceful way is discredited at every level now. There are still elements of the design that date back to the the original in the late 1960’s when it comes to safety design- eg the non-splitting of the hydraulic lines and wires.

  6. Anonymous says:

    FYI…No international airlines only train pilots every 18 months. CAA and FAA regulations require training and check rides every 6 months. Worst case is 2 check rides in 13 months with no more than 7 months between.

    • Anonymous says:

      Are you aware that there are AQP training programs which allow longer periods between checkrides?

  7. Anonymous says:

    Well, the borders aren’t reopening any time soon. #becauseAldensayso

    Looks like there’s no need to run up your blood pressure on whether you’d fly on these or not.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Give us our two free bags again and you’ll see an increase in passenger numbers when we can travel freely again. Worse decision ever made.

    • Anonymous says:

      Worser than when they removed the literacy from the high school graduation criteria.

      • Big Poppa says:

        Ah, I see CNS appointed you Literacy Czar. Aside from “worse” vs “worst” exactly what else bothered you so terribly about the poster’s post? FYI, not everyone is going to be an English major by the time they turn 18; there are far worse examples to criticize. Lastly, not everyone’s first language is English.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Probably one of the safest aircraft flying right now. I don’t remember a time in the past where an aircraft has been so scrutinized and for so long.

    I wouldn’t worry about these anti-vax and anti-max supposedly epidemiologists and armchair aircraft manufacture and design idiots. They thrive on trolling and trying to draw attention to their conspiracy theories.

    Get some WIFI on them soon, that’s the only thing they are missing.

    • Rick says:

      It would have still helped to detail the actual changes the aircrafts went through to make them safer. We armchair idiots would love to know so we can decide whether to fly the Max 8 anytime soon.

  10. anon says:

    I see a lot of locals commenting here,but safety aspects aside, the airline is still losing mountains of taxpayer’s money and 4 of these new planes leased at great cost will only increase the mountain. Just imagine what would happen if one of these “super safe” jets was to crash. Incidentally why do CAL pilots have to undergo extra training?.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Do your research. These planes are flawed.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Can’t wait! Bring on those bad boys!

    • Jah Dread says:

      Seems that our pilots will be more exposed in the air because of lax training procedures elsewhere huh. Kiss me neck . Blessings Cayman Pilots Jah guidance and protection on the bredren dem.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Fantastic News!!!! I can’t wait to fly the MAX again.

    Only thing I would recommend to KX would be to get a proper WIFI system installed particularly if the intention is to continue doing some of the long haul flights.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Fabian and the entire CAL family are doing a hell of a job, there’s no airline that can compare. Love you CAL. I cannot wait to see those birdies airbourne again #thosewhoflyus

    • Anonymous says:


    • Anonymous says:

      If they are doing one hell of a job, just think what would be happening if they were not doing their job. Mind you, I support CAL but trust me, the BS that has occurred the past 5 years is beyond comprehension. If we ignore the issues with the Max (which we cant or wont), the simple fact of the matter is that CAL has over reached with the purchase of these Max8 planes. There are plenty of 700 and 800 series 737s that CAL could have bought at a fraction of the cost for the Max. Yes it is good to get new toys and updated bling bling, but one must only do it if it can be afforded and I dare say we are in a financial spiral with these planes.

      Cayman Airways management needs to remember that once we reopen, Southwest will return (using 700 series 737s) and offer 2 free bags and provide service to all 4 corners of the USA. It is also envisioned that Spirit will return to Cayman and if that happens, locals and visitors will have the choice of 3 LCC as options to get to and from the USA.

      In closing, in the spirit of support- Cayman Airways PLEASE bring back the 2 free bags.

      • Anonymous says:

        “A fool thinks himself to be wise, but a wise man knows himself to be a fool.” William Shakespeare

  15. Anonymous says:

    Kx needs to invest in a proper in-flight entertainment system than that rubbish they have AND WiFi. Give the people their monies worth! Who goes on a flight for a damn rumpunch

    • Anonymous says:

      Agreed! These aircraft are wonderful but for a long ride in this day and age, WIFI is necessary, particularly for the business traveler.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Last time they had brand new planes one ended up in the sound.

    • Anonymous says:

      Wrong the aircraft that went in the water was a used and leased B737-300.

      • Anonymous says:

        7:47 And that was apparently caused by the aircraft being flown back to CGM with the autobrake disabled. I remember the aircraft on the apron under a temporary shelter while the engines were replaced. Wasn’t it also just about to be returned to the leasing company?

        • Anonymous says:

          I heard it was a locker room contest between pilots as to who could touch down and land the plane farthest down the runway and still brake…kaploosh!

    • Anonymous says:

      A little tongue in cheek but point taken ! Funny thing is the almost exact sequence of events and weather conditions caused VP-CKY to do the same thing on 15 January 2014. Then KX management tried to blame the possible runway overrun into the north sound on the first officer who was not the PF (pilot flying). The Captain was.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Lets all go to mango tree and ask the pilots how they feel.

  18. Anonymous says:

    No MAX, no vote!

  19. Anonymous says:

    I’d fly a kite first

  20. Sugarcane fairy says:

    ANY plane will crash if you don’t have an experienced trained pilot flying it.

    That’s why so many of you idiots crash into light poles or into other cars. You aren’t licensed and trained to fly an airplane. Leave the flying to the experts and focus on trying not run over cats, or people on the road and learn how to use an indicator sometime.


  21. Anonymous says:



    It is a known fact that the very design of the plane is flawed and causes the plane to dive WITHOUT the sensors being in place to correct this! The design of the plane did not change and I will not risk my life on any CI government word or backing!!


    • Anonymous says:

      Sooo, what are you going to FLY?

    • Anonymous says:

      Our government didn’t say they were safe. They just reiterated what pretty much every Civil Aviation Authority around the world said about the re-certifcation of the B737-MAX. I seriously doubt they would go out on a limb if they were totally satisfied that the changes were made to ensure they were safe to fly again.

      All of these Cayman arm chair aircraft experts should be working for Boeing and Airbus in their design and manufacture divisions as they are apparently more educated and experienced in these areas compared with any of the employees at these companies.

    • Anonymous says:

      This is correct…. It is a fundamentally flawed aircraft it fights physics. I will not be flying either…. Sorry that CIG can’t get they money back so they say they safe… Get some Neos and sell this junk.

  22. Anonymous says:

    I love my kx boys and ladies, I can’t wait to fly with you all again!! Best pilots in the world!!!

  23. Anonymous says:

    The max aint a bad plane, I would gladly fly on it when it’s back in service……however…… Some questionable characters there.

  24. Anonymous says:

    Next week Cayman Airways is having an open house with the MAX and pilots on hand to ask answer any questions. It is mandatory for these pilots to go or else they will have to face consequences

  25. Anonymous says:

    Now this is rich! Of course the pilots would tell you its safe they have no choice! I see a few have gone to the SAAB lets ask them how they feel as well!
    Is safety going to be the new excuse now for Cayman Airways when i return from Miami at 3 am ? I dont trust Boeing after this..but when i comes to choice i guess i can only fly Jetblue or American when they use the airbus!

  26. Anonymous says:

    I would rather fly on that twin otter and land upside down on blackie corner in spot bay before i get on that ol max!

  27. Anonymous says:

    Clifford is my favorite and he assured me that all was gunna be well..he even showed me on his home simulator after a Netflix session!

  28. Anonymous says:

    Until the first airplane crashes. Right ?

    • Anonymous says:

      CAL is done and so is Boeing if another Max 8 bites the dust. But thats where rebranding comes in.

  29. Anonymous says:

    Why we chose this Max plane? 3 times i flew on her and she was half empty! Maybe we could have use this opportunity to get something smaller! The pilots have no choice but to stand up to the will threaten them as always!

  30. Anonymous says:

    Note that rosy sell-job was signed-off from the “by-the-book” real estate broker and developer, Kel Thompson, of Balboa Beach and Wyndham Reef fame, not by the current and serving CAPA pilots. It’s on brand for a Moses Kirkconnell development shill to speak-over the actual pilots taking the risk, and endorsing that catastrophically ill-timed and secret purchase deal made with hundreds of millions of our money. In 2017 Kel summed up his brief airline career as: “endless hours of boredom punctuated by moments of sheer terror”. Sounds about right for the 737-8, it just won’t be him at the yoke.

    • Anonymous says:

      Old man Kel kel still flies for Cayman Airways. After a 20 year absence he had to come back to his first love of flying! And blocking the pathway for others!

    • A220-100 says:

      The airbus A220-100 is a superior plane to the Max 8, in terms of safery, comfort and effeciency. It is modern. Not a 60 year old streched designed.
      In addition it is the right size for the Cayman Islands. Delta bought 75 A220-300. Delta is a superior airline to CAL (sorry to say it)
      Too much egos in the decision making process. We had a chance to return them and they did not.

    • Anonymous says:

      If another one crashes he’ll have egg on his face.

  31. Anonymous says:

    Its a shame that the Pilots stand up for the airline and are treated so bad even by their own! Some have given decades of their lives to this company to retire with Nothing! And now they are defending this plane in hopes for a turn around only to retire with a pat on the bum and a free ticket #vote2021

  32. Anonymous says:

    Great news!

  33. Anonymous says:

    Love kx and all the staff! But lets not forget about the cabin crew who put their lives in the line as well! I have been told that those with worries about these planes have been threatened with termination!

    • Anonymous says:

      What else would CAL do with them if they change their entire fleet to MAX’s> Keep paying them to sit on the ground?

      • Anonymous says:

        The planes are leased not owned – they should have been returned months ago.

      • Anonymous says:

        Really, who tell you that foolishness, pray tell? Do you really think a trained well experienced pilot like many at Cayman Airways would fly an airplane they don’t deem as safe..

        Absolute rubbish, stop spreading crap. speak to the pilots directly and see what they have to say. I know many of them personally and they can’t wait to get the MAX going again.

  34. Anonymous says:

    God bless the airline and its Pilots but i am afraid of whats going to happen when the competition returns. With these failed Boeings and all the delays and other issues we have with the airline , it might be too late to rebound! I am sure these new planes are very expensive and flying them late and half empty just wont cut it!

    • Anonymous says:

      Geesh, did you just read what you wrote? The other airlines probably won’t even re-start here on the same level as they were before. American, Southwest and United will be operating with B737-Max aircraft many of which are much older than these brand new ones that Cayman Airways has. Getting rid of the B737-300 will improve greatly on any delays that the airline had in the past.

  35. Anonymous says:

    Coerced testimonials coming from the 737 pilots that must either fly that type, or quit the airline. Sounds legit.

    • Anonymous says:

      There is a global shortage of pilots. I highly doubt any pilot is being held against their will.

      • PW says:

        There is a actually a frightening global SURPLUS of pilots. There has been worldwide redundancies and furloughs by the hundreds of thousands!

        • Anonymous says:

          People stopped flying and started ordering online. Mail and online ordering still happens, and logistics didn’t grind to a halt.

          If anything, logistics airlines need the civilian pilots.

  36. Anonymous says:

    I not flying on the planes if the pilots aren’t.

  37. Na today Bo Bo! says:

    What dem pilots need to do is retire some of the olda ones! Men in they 70s as managers!

  38. Anonymous says:

    Jetblue have signaled their intention to return to Cayman once the border re opens flying the Airbus to Ft Lauderdale and New York again. New plane , Max plane, or plane…I am looking for reasonable prices and ON TIME PERFORMANCE.

  39. _||) says:

    We take a bigger risk driving to work every day, and that na no joke.

    I have always admired CAL’s dedication to safety first. Cannot wait to hear “Cabin crew please be seated for arrival” again.

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