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Boeing Gears Up to Renew its Safety Culture After 737 MAX Crashes

In response to the two deadly 737 MAX crashes, Boeing’s Chief Aerospace Safety Officer Mike Delaney on Monday outlined how — beyond specific changes to its design practices and its manufacturing operations — the company’s leadership aims to rebuild and improve its entire safety culture. ( More...

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Would be somewhat believable if they were retreating to Seattle to focus on engineering and build quality instead of relocating to DC to more efficiently bribe politicians.
Dr Stephen Vadas 12
What? They just thought of this "safety culture" now? Must be affecting the bottom line.
mbrews 5
Where was the Safety Culture that Boeing clearly lost ? Was it some magic combination of slogans, handbooks, algorithms, or elegant PowerPoint shows ?

No. The PROFESSIONAL culture was embodied in EXPERIENCED people with a clear sense of PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY. Most were in Puget Sound, and knew each other well. Many were pilots, many were ex-military. The culture took four generations to develop.

IMO, after the MacDonald Douglas take-under, two factors came about which affected Boeing's Professional culture.

Consider first the influx and ascendance of MBA executives (Money Before Anything). Who likely overshadowed the influence of experienced aircraft design engineers at key levels of the Boeing organization.

Second, consider the MBA's dream for "GLOBALIZED and Outsourced " key elements of design and manufacturing.

Perhaps the MBA crowd considered home-grown Professional Experience a expensive luxury, before choosing to scour the globe, employing inexperienced workforces as mere "low-bidder commodities" ?

Seems possible that, while prioritizing " lowest worldwide cost " , they may have jettisoned the valuable PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE that EMBODIED the previous Safety Culture.
Dimitris Giovanakis 2
Colin Seftel 4
And how! $8.6 billion in compensation to customers for having their planes grounded, $5 billion for unusual costs of production, and $6.3 billion for increased costs of the 737 Max program.

patrick baker 20
Boeing makes a mockery of safety culture in its sales and marketing first method of doing business, placing safety and engineering in the back of the pack, barely paying lip service to the three hundred plus dead folks killed in 737max crashes. At a minimum, all the board and all the top levels of management ought to be fired and their pensions be revoked. All the monies the board and upper management stole in the last few years for performance bonuses needs to be clawed back. Period....
Bob Denny 10
See my reply to Michasl Dendo below. My father once told me “If you want to know everything you need to about an aircraft company, talk to their inspectors and line mechanics”. Boeing has gotten very sick.
Michael Dendo -8
Are you a bitter former employee? Sure sounds like it.
Bob Denny 7
I have several friends here, employees, and former employees, at the Mesa, AZ facility where they build the Apache Helicopter. One inspector (the key to quality, integrity, and safety) has been repeatedly pressured by Seattle upper management to pass over discrepancies in order to meet schedules. He says they have no clue except that their jobs are at risk, not that the aircrew or maintenance techs might be at risk if the ship is not in the condition specified by the designers. A toxic culture like this ALWAYS(!!) starts at the very top. Always!!!
21voyageur 4
Perhaps another way to put it is leadership starts at the top. (obvious) But leadership culture trickles/cascades downward. Rotten at the top? What does one expect from the rank and file. BUT, the real customer is the stockholder who only cares about return on investment. Quality unless a contributor to ROI is viewed as a liability as is the case with Boeing. IMHO
cyberjet 3
There are none so blind as those who refuse to see.
blueashflyer 10
please... don't say BOEING and GEAR UP in the same headline <shudder> oooh
James Werner 5
Hmm....seems like this should have been news three years ago.
Dave Mathes 4
...uhhh, ok...somehow I don't feel so much better now....
Chris B 7
So how many years has it taken Boeing to rediscover safety after Max crashes, 787 fires etc?
21voyageur 10
The result of poor management and greed resulted in a decision to extend the life of an aircraft model that is/was well past its prime. There should never have been a Max series and the 737 should have ended at NG. All IMHO.
mbrews 2
Yes, there have been several decades of “ Extend and Pretend “ in the 737 model series. Meaning extend the size range payload and avionics while pretending the revised models give the same response and characteristics to all pilots.

Industry observers have long known the 737 has a short legged landing gear, dating from original product design.

Take a look at the YouTube video from 2018 How the 737 MAX 10 Landing Gear Works . featuring Boeing engineer Gary Hamatani .

He demonstrates the Rube Goldberg gadgetry to allow main gear to EXTEND 9 inches longer (to reduce risk of tail strike ) . During retraction, the complex mechanism folds itself smaller to fit into the smaller wheel well.

Then he smugly says the pilots will NOT see any differences.

that’s the PRETEND part of the video

Why ? Because things work until they don’t work. Suppose the left main gear doesn’t fold properly (gets bound or stuck) while the right main gear does fold, how different will the subsequent landing look ? What’s the QRH gonna say ? Do they plan a test flight landing with one longer MLG and the other shorter MLG ?
avionik99 3
If previous 737 aircraft did not have this system why not just remove it from and get on with it?
Domingo Montoro 5
Because the plane has been reconfigured structurally to go head to head with a-321neo
Brian Chandler 6
Because of the changes, mainly larger heavier engines mounted on a wing that's had the same ground clearance for decades which forced them to mount them forward and changed COG and COT. Without MCAS (or some other computer aided control solution) the MAX would not be flyable.
Colin Seftel 4
The Max would be unstable without MCAS.
Michael Dendo -6
For a plane that is unstable, it sure is performing well for the airlines. I guess the Boeing bashing will never end.
djmobile 2
It’s about time for some more news about Airbus. I hope not but Boeing will get it together and people will realize once again that safety is first as long as the boss gets his bonus. Big companies just want the bottom line at the end of the day..
o 艹 -7
The MCAS is installed because the engine is too close to the engine and the nose is easy to be lifted. It is to prevent the nose from being lifted too high, not unstable.
Stefan Sobol 7
MCAS is there because the MAX does not have positive longitudinal stability in some conditions. Regulations require positive longitudinal stability in transport aircraft.
Tony Silverstrå 1
Airbus for me thank you
Ron Klein 0
Both 737MAX accidents were largely caused by pilot incompetence and over reliance on automation. Ture off power to the trim motor, who cares where the erroneous input is coming from' trim manually & fly the airplane.
Brian Chandler 6
The second MAX crash they did disable the trim motor, and couldn't recover the plane, and then at the end switched it back on when it was far past the point of recovery.

So that solution as presented is not feasible.
Dr Stephen Vadas 6
This is not true. When a pilot has 7 audio and visual alarms at the same time, it takes time to address them - time which they did not have. "Boeing Co.’s evaluation of the 737 Max system during development used an oversimplified test that didn’t anticipate the cacophony of alarms and alerts that actually occurred during a pair of deadly crashes." Source NTSB press release.
21voyageur 2
BUT the aircraft and its functionality were sold with the intent of reducing risk which itself was necessary to appease difficulties in getting more out of old technology. Please don't confuse engineering and operations.
djmobile 0
Ian Edge 1
It just carries on as it has done for years :
1977 Lusarka accident:It
was determined that the structure of the tailfin failed due to metal fatigue in the rear spar structure, and due to the lack of an adequate failsafe structure or device should such an event occur. The investigation also identified deficiencies in the assessment of aircraft designs and their certification and in the way aircraft were inspected.
Colin Seftel 3
That was at Lusaka, Zambia - a Dan-Air 707. Details here:
To be fair to Boeing, at that time the safety assessment process wasn't as well developed as it is today.
Ron Klein -1
Yes, audio & visual alarms are distracting. Boeing, FAA, & NTSB correctly assumed that a properly trained & competent crew would fly the airplane first which would mean addressing that spinning, noisy trim wheel next to your knee. Switches & CB's are readily available to do that. Weather was CAVU, no excuses.
cyberjet 3
The FAA and other CAA’s didn’t even know there was an element of the flight control system that would aim the aircraft at the ground due to a single point of failure.
cyberjet 2
If I sold your son a car that applied the throttle when he stepped on the brake, I’m pretty sure you wouldn’t blame him for hitting the front door to the mall.
Francisco Martinez -1
Nobody talks about the Airbus planes that dropped out of the sky like a rock due to defective pitot tubes. Things that make you go hmm...
Colin Seftel 5
AF447 crashed because the crew had forgotten how to handle an airspeed mismatch.
That’s one case. What’s the others?
Francisco Martinez 0
So with that logic then the pilots of the MAX had “forgotten” how to flick the trim cutoff switches - case closed. I hope you can see the double standard now.
Colin Seftel 0
Not true - the early Max training did not include mention of MCAS or that a faulty AOA would trigger trim instability. The Max was sold on the (false) premise that NG crews could convert to the Max with minimal training.
Francisco Martinez 0
I used your own logic of "the crew had forgotten how" so you just debunked yourself.
cyberjet 5
Were you sleeping? It was talked about constantly for three years after AF447 and Airbus already had a fix in place when the accident occurred, but Air France had not yet done the service bulletin. Airbus also never tried to hide any of their automation systems from the regulators during certification.
Francisco Martinez 1
I never heard of it until I saw a crash investigation documentary and I’m an enthusiast. On the other hand, you can pick any person walking on the street and asked them what they know about the 737 MAX and you’ll see the difference. Heck, even my wife knows about the 737 MAX and she knows nothing about airplanes.
o 艹 -7
Because of that MCAS system, people's lives have been lost. I hope Boeing will not make such a low-level mistake again.
Jim Welch 0
Boeing’s “safety culture” just means they’re recommending the use of condone when sleeping with the FAA.
o 艹 -8
The root of all evil is the MAXS system.
o 艹 -8
Wrong. It's called the MCAS system.


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