Friday, 11 October 2019

Boeing and FAA slammed by expert panel over the 737 Max certification

All backed up and nowhere to go.....                                                                     Photo Reuters
The US Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) has been slammed by an expert panel over its oversight of Boeing's 737 Max and its certification process, following the two fatal crashes that took the lives of 346 people and lead to the global grounding of the type.

The major multi-agency investigation and review blamed the FAA for its "inadequate awareness" of the aircraft's anti-stall system MCAS, the failure of which appears to be the primary cause of both disasters. 

The report says the FAA had failed to accurately or fully assess the MCAS system that Boeing fitted to the jets to combat the design flaws on the latest generation of the hugely popular 737 model. The FAA also didn't assign enough specialists to review the software’s design. It also says that the FAA relies too heavily on manufacturers to self certify aircraft and avionics software is airworthy and fit for purpose.  "With adequate FAA engagement and oversight, the extent of delegation does not in itself compromise safety. - However, in the B737 MAX program, the FAA had inadequate awareness of the MCAS function which, coupled with limited involvement, resulted in an inability of the FAA to provide an independent assessment of the adequacy of the Boeing-proposed certification activities associated with MCAS." the report says.

The US manufacturer Boeing was also criticised in the report, stating that its employees conducting FAA work faced “undue pressure" which "attributed to conflicting priorities and an environment that does not support FAA requirements,"

In a statement to Reuters, FAA administrator Steve Dickson said he would review the JATR's recommendations and take appropriate action.

Whilst US airlines are already putting the 737 Max back into flight schedules from early January before any regulator has declared the type safe to fly again. Many other operators are waiting for a global consensus of regulatory approval before rescheduling the jets.  


Boeing's major program deliveries during the third quarter, including deliveries under an operating lease. 
Major Programs
3rd Quarter
2019

Year-to-
Date 2019






Commercial Airplanes Programs






737
5


118


747
1


5


767
10


32


777
12


34
(1)

787
35


113

Total
63


302







Defense, Space & Security Programs






AH-64 Apache (New)
17


27


AH-64 Apache (Remanufactured)
21


56


C-17 Globemaster III
1


1


C-40A
2


2


CH-47 Chinook (New)
6


13


CH-47 Chinook (Renewed)
7


16


F-15 Models
2


7


F/A-18 Models
6


16


KC-46 Tanker
9


21


P-8 Models
6


14


Commercial and Civil Satellites


1


Military Satellites











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