Boeing Jet Breakdown Forces Biden Official Into Drastic Move

Boeing Jet Breakdown Forces Biden Official Into Drastic Move

Secretary of State Antony Blinken faced an unplanned journey across Western Europe on Wednesday due to a breakdown of his Boeing jet in France.

This incident adds to Boeing's challenges, as its airplanes have encountered mechanical issues that have alarmed travelers throughout the year.

Last month, during takeoff in San Francisco, there was a literal situation where "the wheels literally fell off" at least one of them.

During his time in Paris, Blinken expressed solidarity with Ukraine and voiced a hope for containment of Israel's conflict with Islamic militants to Gaza.

Following a meeting with French leaders on Wednesday, Blinken was set to depart from Paris on his government-owned and U.S. Air Force-maintained Boeing jet for a meeting in Belgium with the country’s NATO allies.

However, the jet was deemed unfit for travel, and Blinken had to switch to alternative transportation, driving from Paris to Brussels, covering roughly 200 miles.

The issue with Blinken’s jet was vaguely reported as a “mechanical issue,” and it was unclear if it had been resolved by early Thursday morning.

Additionally, the jet in question was reported to be “an older model of the Boeing Co. 737,” which may indicate that its issues are not related to those seen in newer Boeing models like the grounded Boeing 737 MAX.

However, this incident adds to Boeing's current challenges and raises concerns about the safety of company-made planes.

2024 has been a challenging year for Boeing, with multiple problems affecting its fleet, although none have been fatal so far.

As for Blinken, this isn't the first time he has faced delays due to a Boeing jet issue this year, as a previous incident in January involved an oxygen leak issue with a company airplane during his return from Switzerland.

Boeing and Blinken did not provide comments on Wednesday’s grounding of the State Department’s 737 jet.

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