Europe calls for checks on handful of Boeing 737-900ER jets

FILE PHOTO: A Boeing 737-900ER taxis at Boeing Field in Seattle

PARIS (Reuters) -The European Union Aviation Safety Agency said on Tuesday it had adopted a U.S. safety alert calling for checks on some Boeing 737-900ER jets.

The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration on Sunday recommended that operators of Boeing 737-900ER aircraft, the vast majority of which are flown in the United States, visually inspect mid-exit door plugs to ensure they are properly secured.

The move came after the FAA grounded 171 Boeing 737 MAX 9 planes following a mid-air blowout of a door plug on an eight-week old Alaska Airlines jet. The 737-900ER is not part of the newer MAX fleet but has a similar door plug design.

An EASA spokesperson said five 737-900ERs with the relevant component are operated in Europe, and are covered by the call for inspections, including two with Czech airline SmartWings.

(Reporting by Tim Hepher; editing by Christina Fincher)