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Alaska Airlines plane had door panel blow out ahead of scheduled safety check: report

Alaska Airlines said a warning light found before the flight took off did not suggest the aircraft needed to be taken out of service, according to reports.

The Alaska Airlines plane whose door panel was blown out midflight in January had been scheduled to undergo maintenance following the flight after some engineers and technicians showed concern over a warning light before takeoff, according to a report.

Investigators found that four key bolts were missing from the door plug to the Boeing 737 Max 9 aircraft when it took off from Portland, Oregon, on Jan. 5. The panel blew off at 16,000 feet, which caused the cabin to depressurize before the flight returned safely to Portland International Airport.

As a federal probe into Boeing’s safety measures continues, The New York Times reported on Tuesday that on the day before the blowout, some engineers and technicians at Alaska Airlines became concerned over a warning light that indicated an issue with the plane’s pressurization system.

Instead of removing the plane from service, the newspaper reported that the airline decided to continue flying the plane and scheduled a maintenance check for the night of Jan. 5.

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The airline told The Associated Press that the warning did not require or suggest that the aircraft needed to be taken out of service, and that its maintenance plan "was in line with all processes and procedures."

Fox News Digital reached out to Alaska Airlines but did not immediately hear back.

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Since the blowout on Alaska Airlines flight 1282, Boeing has faced increased scrutiny.

A six-week Federal Aviation Administration review of Boeing’s manufacturing processes for the 737 Max found the company failed 33 of the 89 aspects, according to The New York Times.

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Boeing responded internally on Tuesday, according to Reuters, announcing it is adding weekly compliance checks for every 737 work area and additional audits of equipment to reduce quality problems.

Fox Business’ Timothy H.J. Nerozzi contributed to this report.

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