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Antony Blinken had yet another problem with his Boeing plane. He had to go in a car instead

By Chris Isidore and Jennifer Hansler, CNN

Washington, DC (CNN) — US Secretary of State Antony Blinken is the latest person dealing with problems with a Boeing jet.

Blinken and other State Department officials who are in Europe for talks about the wars in Ukraine and Gaza were forced to ride by car between Paris and Brussels Wednesday because the Air Force C-40 jet, a modified version of the Boeing 737 used commercial airlines, developed unspecified problems, according to the press pool traveling with him. Blinken travels on aircraft from the Air Force fleet. The top US diplomat arrived without incident to the Belgian capital for a meeting of the NATO foreign ministers.

This is the second time this year that Blinken has had an issue with a Boeing plane while traveling. In January, when Blinken was about to return from Switzerland, the same model of plane suffered what the traveling press was told was a critical failure related to an oxygen leak, and he was forced to fly home in a smaller jet.

Boeing has been facing increased scrutiny since a door plug on a 737 Max blew off on an Alaska Airlines flight on January 5, leaving a gaping hole in the side of the plane that subsequently landed safely without any significant injuries. The National Transportation Safety Board’s preliminary investigation found that jet left a Boeing factory in October without the four bolts needed to keep the door plug in place.

The incident has sparked numerous investigations into the Boeing’s practices and public attention to a large number of other problems on subsequent flights with Boeing jets. Many of those came on older planes and issues, which typically would have not been reported, were likely not caused by anything Boeing did.

But the subsequent incidents, which typically would have not been reported by the media, have focused more attention on questions about the quality and safety of Boeing jets.

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Article Topic Follows: CNN - Business/Consumer

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