Business News: Boeing’s latest 737 MAX issue prompts FAA audit.
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is scrutinizing Boeing Co’s process to make minor design changes to its product line after a manufacturing issue with the 737 MAX grounded dozens of aircraft, the regulator said Thursday .
The FAA is also investigating the origin of the electrical production problem revealed on April 7 that led to the grounding of 109 Boeing 737 MAXs worldwide, including 71 in the United States, he added. The objective of the audit is to identify “areas where the company can improve its processes,” he said. Boeing replied that it “looks forward to continued commitment and direction from, the FAA as we continually improve safety and quality in our processes. “
The FAA will review “Boeing’s process for making minor design changes to its product line, with the goal of identifying areas where the company can improve,” the agency said after the Wall Street Journal reported. the audit.
FAA oversight of Boeing has been the focus of US lawmakers after two fatal 737 MAX crashes in late 2018 and early 2019 claimed 346 lives. Regulators grounded the global fleet for nearly two years as they worked out software and other fixes. When the FAA approved the aircraft to carry new passengers last November, administrator Steve Dickson called the 737 MAX the “most scrutinized” airliner in history.
Five months later, when the electrical problem surfaced, Boeing recommended that airlines take 109 of the jets out of service, about a quarter of the global MAX fleet. The FAA has said it will impose solutions to an “urgent safety problem” reported by Boeing before the affected jets can resume passenger flights. The severity of the flight risk posed by the electrical problem was unclear, according to people familiar with discussions of potential problems.
After Boeing identified the electrical problem, engineers determined it affected a standby power unit and rack located behind the first officer’s seat as well as the main cockpit dashboard, according to the FAA. A potential side effect, people familiar with the matter said, could cause flight crews not to realize the plane’s de-icing systems are not working. Ice build-up can cause the engine to shut down or temporarily shut down.
The FAA said the affected airplanes were made after a design change in early 2019. Boeing also needs to repair more than 300 additional undelivered aircraft, according to FAA documents and people briefed on the matter. Boeing said Wednesday that it has “worked closely with the FAA and our customers to finalize two service bulletins that will ensure sufficient ground travel in those areas.”