Government Shutdown risks the launch of Delta's first Airbus A220
Chicago - The entry into service of Delta Airlines' first Airbus A220-100 may be delayed due to the government shutdown in the United States.
Delta Airlines received the first of 75 Airbus A220-100 on order in October 2018. Three more has joined the airline's fleet since then. The commercial debut of the aircraft was scheduled for January 31st between New York, LaGuardia and Boston.
Despite the Airbus A220 (formerly Bombardier CSeries) was certified in June 2016 by the FAA, the entry into service of a new type with US carriers requires an operational review by the agency, including pilot training, maintenance, and the physical verification of the aircraft and its equipment.
But the partial shutdown of the U.S. government risks the entry into service of the Delta's first Airbus A220 as planned reports Flightglobal. Because the FAA units tasked with this job, haven't started it yet. According to sources who spoke to the British aviation intelligence provider, the process may be long and sometimes is completed just before a new model is put into service.
A government shutdown occurs when the Congress fails to pass sufficient bills to fund federal government operations and agencies, or the President refuses to sign such bills.
Delta Air Lines stated that it was continuing to monitor the situation and would work with the FAA to ensure that the A220 is fully certified before January 31st.
Closed since the government's partial shutdown that began on December 22, the FAA has not responded to Flightglobal's requests for comment.
Delta was the first US carrier to order the Bombardier CSeries jets. The airline ordered 75 CS100 in total in 2016 and 2017. But Boeing filed a complaint with the US Department of Commerce, claiming that the Canadian manufacturer received unfair government subsidies to develop the aircraft and sold CS100s to Delta at artificially-low prices.
Bombardier won the case after the US International Trade Commission concluded that Boeing's 737 family jets do not compete directly with Bombardier's CSeries.
After that, the Canadian aircraft manufacturer sold the majority stake of its CSeries program to the Boeing's European rival Airbus last year in October and the aircraft was re-branded as the Airbus A220.