LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -- Following the grounding of the Boeing 737 Max planes due to multiple technical issues, Southwest Airlines reported a decrease in total passengers out of McCarran International Airport.
According to monthly data collected by McCarran, Southwest saw passenger counts go down 2.4 percent from Jan. to Aug. year-to-date. While April 2019 saw a 0.6 percent increase in passengers from the previous year, each month after saw a decrease:
- May 2019: -0.1 percent
- June 2019: -6.3 percent
- July 2019: -7.8 percent
- Aug. 2019: -4.3 percent
Southwest, the leading airline at McCarran based on total passenger count, saw the decrease despite the busy summer travel season. McCarran reported a 3 percent increase overall from 2018 to 2019 through August.
A spokesman with Southwest confirmed the decrease in passengers was due to the Boeing 737 Max grounding.
"Currently, we do not have any Boeing 737 Max 8’s in our schedule through Jan. 5, 2020," Southwest spokesman Dan Landson said in a statement.
Boeing and the FAA shared blame for the certification of the 737 Max in a report released Friday morning.
"The FAA is following a thorough process, not a prescribed timeline, for returning the Boeing 737 Max to passenger service," FAA spokesman Ian Gregor said in a statement. "The FAA will lift the aircraft’s prohibition order when it is deemed safe to do so. The FAA is continuing to evaluate Boeing’s software modification and is still developing necessary training requirements."