Transport Canada may break with its customary practice of accepting FAA safety standards and will not allow Boeing 737 MAX aircraft to operate in its airspace unless the crews have additional simulator training. The FAA has decided against mandating further sim training but Transport Minister Marc Garneau seems to be leaning that way. “Simulators are the very best way from a training point of view to go over exactly what could happen in a real way and to react properly to it,” Canadian Transport Minister Marc Garneau said. “It’s not going to be a question of pulling out an iPad and spending an hour on it.” No formal announcement has been made.
Meanwhile, Air Canada is continuing its review of the status of its 24 MAX aircraft and it has an advantage if sim training is required. It has the only fully equipped MAX simulator in North America. Since simulator training was not required for typing 737 pilots on the MAX, most carriers didn’t buy the sim and instead use 737NG simulators for training. MAX-specific features, including the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System that is the focus of two catastrophic crash investigations, have been dealt with in a one-hour presentation delivered by computer tablet. WestJet, which has 13, MAX jets, did not directly comment on the possible simulator requirement.