Published: Fri, November 01, 2019
Worldwide | By Lisa Hogan

Boeing CEO tells USA lawmakers: 'We've made mistakes'

Boeing CEO tells USA lawmakers: 'We've made mistakes'

The problem is, Muilenburg could have - and should have - known more.

"I'll tell you why: the 737 programme is one of the longest running and most successful programmes in the world". The CEO noted that the man's lawyer said he was describing problems with a simulator, not MCAS itself.

"Our approach is to train pilots on the effects of a failure mode", he added.

"We are sorry, truly and deeply sorry", Muilenburg said to the family members of crash victims when opening his testimony.

A lot of scrutiny Muilenburg, who earlier this month was stripped of his title as board chairman, said on a conference call last week he was "looking forward to participating in those hearings".

Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg will face tough questions from lawmakers this week during his first appearance on the Hill following the two fatal plane crashes involving the 737 MAX jet that killed 346 people.

DeFazio didn't detail the nature of the safety concerns raised by the Boeing manager or how the company responded.

The two accidents killed 346 people and have thrown the company into crisis and roiled the global aviation industry. The Federal Aviation Administration never fully assessed the new system.

"The design and certification of the MCAS did not adequately consider the likelihood of loss of control of the aircraft", the report said.

"I would walk before I would get on a 737 MAX".

Indonesian investigators say Boeing's design of MCAS contributed to the crash of a Lion Air Max last October.

But Senator Ted Cruz, a Texas Republican, lambasted Muilenburg as he struggled to answer pointed questions about 2016 texts from Boeing pilot Mark Forkner to a colleague that discussed the "egregious" performance of the MCAS during a simulation test and said that he "basically lied to the regulators".

Some of the statement was crafted as questions for Muilenburg.

"You shouldn't be cutting corners and I see corners being cut", Tester said.

"In both flights a software function activated in response to incorrect information from an external airplane sensor as part of a broader chain of events", explained Boeing Co.

Messages released have "reflected a disturbing level of casualness and flippancy that seem to corroborate these criticisms", he said.

The FAA is demanding significant new safeguards to MCAS before the plane can fly again.

This week's hearings are examining aviation safety, in particular the issues surrounding the 737 MAX.

In the months since the Ethiopian crash, Boeing has been working on fixes to the automated feature, stopping it from turning on several times in a row and requiring it to read data from two sensors as a fail safe.

"In hindsight, senator, yes", Hamilton replied.

Muilenburg also acknowledged a "mistake on that implementation" for failing to tell the FAA for 13 months that it inadvertently made a so-called angle of attack disagree alert optional on the 737 MAX, instead of standard as on earlier 737s.

At one point, Senator Richard Blumenthal of CT referred to the 737 MAX as "flying coffins".

Blumenthal asked Muilenburg to commit to supporting efforts to change the safety certification system, but Muilenburg committed only to participating in its efforts.

Some of the victims' families attended the hearing, holding posters of their deceased loved ones.

On Wednesday, Muilenburg will appear in front of the House transportation committee, which has been leading the congressional investigation into the Max and is expected to adopt an even more adversarial stance.

Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) said Boeing had misled his office after the crashes, blaming them on pilot error.

Danielle Moore was headed to Nairobi, Kenya for the United Nations Environment Assembly when her plane - Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 - crashed just a few minutes after takeoff form Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on March 10.

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