Ethiopian crash report highlights sensors, software, leaves questions

06 April, 2019, 06:31 | Author: Emmett Rice
  • The accident aircraft Boeing 737 MAX 8 ET-AVJ of Ethiopian Airlines

Muilenburg promised Boeing would issue a software update for its 737 Max 8 and 9 fleet, which has been grounded internationally following the Ethiopian Airlines crash on March 10. "As we learn more about the accident and findings become available, we will take appropriate action", the USA agency said in a statement.

"Expressing sadness for the loss of the 346 lives claimed by the two accidents, Muilenburg said he could not remember "a more heart-wrenching time" at his career at Boeing" and said the company knew lives depended on the work it did. "When the MAX returns to the skies with the software changes to the MCAS function, it will be among the safest airplanes ever to fly".

Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg sits behind pilots during a 737 MAX airplane flight that demonstrated the performance of a flight control software update.

The system activated in the Ethiopian Airlines crash last month and also during a separate Lion Air crash in Indonesia in October, Boeing said in a statement following the release of preliminary findings from Ethiopia. The aircraft, which was headed to Nairobi, Kenya, crashed in a village southeast of the Ethiopian capital, killing all 149 passengers and 8 crew members on board.

The investigation determined that the pilots on the Ethiopian flights turned the anti-stall system on and off again in an attempt to regain control of the aircraft.

A day earlier, the nation's transport minister called on Boeing to review the 737 Max flight-control system before allowing planes to be used, after a preliminary government report showing the doomed jetliner couldn't recover from an uncommanded and persistent nose dive shortly after takeoff.

Fitch Ratings said on Friday the impact on the airline industry in Asia from the grounding of Boeing 737 Max jets has been muted so far but may worsen in the second quarter of 2019.

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McAllister said that Boeing would continue to work with the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration and other regulatory agencies worldwide on the development and certification of the software update and training program.

USA regulators this week demanded further improvements to a proposed fix before it could be submitted for review and announced a review of the certification of the automated flight control system on the 737 Max.

Details of the fix, which were unveiled to pilots last week, focused on the MCAS, which can automatically lower the plane's nose to prevent stalls.

Manufacturers avoid halting and then resuming production as this disrupts supply chains and can cause industrial snags. That was similar to the Lion Air crash.

The proper response to MCAS emergencies, Leeham Co analyst Bjorn Fehrm said, is to correct the risky nose-down "trim" using electronic thumb switches, then turn off MCAS and trim manually with the wheel.

Ethiopian Airlines plane crash wreckage at the site where the plane dived into the ground.

"Those planes should never fly again" and consumers should boycott the jets, Nader said, speaking remotely by telephone during a press conference at the Clifford Law Offices in Chicago, where Stumo's parents also spoke. "I think this is a more complex problem than what we initially thought".

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