Uh Oh: FAA Investigating Boeing Over 737 MAX Fiasco

Uh Oh: FAA Investigating Boeing Over 737 MAX Fiasco

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2024 isn’t off to a good start for Boeing, after a deactivated emergency exit blew out inflight on an Alaska Boeing 737 MAX 9. Unfortunately the production quality issues don’t seem to be an isolated incident, as inspections of other 737 MAX 9s have revealed some loose screws in the same area on other aircraft.

The United Stated Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is now taking serious action, and it could have an impact on the ability of airlines to operate their schedules.

FAA notifies Boeing it’s conducting an investigation

The FAA has today released a statement indicating that the regulatory body is investigating Boeing over this incident, and that passenger safety, rather than speed, will determine when the 737 MAX 9 flies again. Here’s the statement:

This incident should have never happened and it cannot happen again. FAA formally notified Boeing that it is conducting an investigation to determine if Boeing failed to ensure completed products conformed to its approved design and were in a condition for safe operation in compliance with FAA regulations. This investigation is a result of an incident on a Boeing Model 737-9 MAX where it lost a “plug” type passenger door and additional discrepancies. Boeing’s manufacturing practices need to comply with the high safety standards they’re legally accountable to meet.

The safety of the flying public, not speed, will determine the timeline for returning the Boeing 737-9 MAX to service.

This is bad news for airlines like United

This could have major implications for Boeing and airlines

Obviously issues involving the Boeing 737 MAX feel like déjà vu, just with a different aircraft variant (the 737 MAX 9 rather than the 737 MAX 8). A couple of days ago, I posed the question of whether this would end up being a major issue for Boeing and airlines, or whether planes would be back in service within days, as airlines have been hoping.

Based on this investigation, it sounds to me like this might be way more complicated than that, and that 737 MAX 9s might not be flying anytime soon. After all, stating that the safety of the flying public and not speed will determine the timeline for returning the jet to service is pretty clear, since no one can say with 100% confidence that this couldn’t happen again.

An investigation like this isn’t going to take just a few days, and if the FAA intends to be thorough, I’d expect this to draw out for quite an extended period of time.

Here in the United States, this has the biggest implications for Alaska and United, as the airlines have roughly 65 and 80 of these jets, respectively. If those planes need to remain out of service for an extended period of time, this is going to hugely impact their ability to operate their networks.

The 737 MAX 9 may remain grounded for an extended period of time

Bottom line

The FAA is now formally investigating Boeing over the latest 737 MAX issues. The FAA has made it clear that these planes will only return to service once a thorough investigation has been performed, ensuring the flying public is safe, with speed not being a consideration. Given the history of Boeing trying to hide things from the FAA, I’d expect this to have a major impact on airlines.

How do you see this playing out?

Conversations (64)
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  1. Josh Guest

    This is what you get and should expect when a company only cares about making more and more and more money for it's top 1%! I will NEVER fly on a Boeing aircraft that was made after 1992! Looks like I will be flying on Airbus aircraft from now on as they seem to make a quality product and they have a good safety record compared to this MAX fiasco!

    My question is how...

    This is what you get and should expect when a company only cares about making more and more and more money for it's top 1%! I will NEVER fly on a Boeing aircraft that was made after 1992! Looks like I will be flying on Airbus aircraft from now on as they seem to make a quality product and they have a good safety record compared to this MAX fiasco!

    My question is how is there no one in jail over the death of 300+ people from the previous crashes? Good luck Boeing and to ANYONE the still pushes this MAX aircraft on the flying public! What a shame!

  2. vlcnc Guest

    The FAA are just pretending to do something. They won't do anything to hold Boeing accountable and will just allow this dangerous plane back in the air. We know from the Netlix and Al Jazeera documentaries how cosy and corrupt it is between the FAA and Boeing people.

  3. FlyerDon Guest

    Ben, a deactivated emergency exit and a plug door are not the same thing. This plane had a plug door.

  4. Lynda Guest

    The 737 MAX 8 has the same door plug. Why aren’t inspections of this airplane happening?

    1. ConcordeBoy Diamond

      No it doesn't.

      While the 737-MAX8200 has this same type-II exit, it's never plugged.

      Doing so would negate the very point of that variant's existence (to increase capacity over standard 737-MAX8s.

  5. YULtide Gold

    I think someone at Boeing has a screw loose.

    1. JohnRossa Gold

      Nah, I think they took their "open door policy" a bit too far.

    2. Jim Lovejoy Guest

      To misquote Mason the person who encouraged the Challenger launch 'somebody took off their engineering hat and put on their management hat'

  6. FLLFLYER Guest

    I think the elephant in the room is the other Boeing 737-900 (non-max) aircraft fitted with the same type of plug door, operated by UA and DL (and probably others that I am unaware of).

    There has been some "hinting" that the FAA might mandate inspections of these airframes as well.
    They have the same type of plug door.

    Why would the be inherently safer than a 737 Max-9? I understand they have operated...

    I think the elephant in the room is the other Boeing 737-900 (non-max) aircraft fitted with the same type of plug door, operated by UA and DL (and probably others that I am unaware of).

    There has been some "hinting" that the FAA might mandate inspections of these airframes as well.
    They have the same type of plug door.

    Why would the be inherently safer than a 737 Max-9? I understand they have operated thousands of flights with no incidents with the plug door.
    However - as for me personally - I am hesitant to book anything operated with a 737-900.

    I am former cabin crew and not easily spooked.

    1. Tim Dunn Diamond

      there doesn't seem to be any "hinting" that I have read.
      The issue is manufacturing, not design.
      All of the -900ERs have been through overhauls so the issue, even if it existed at manufacturing, is likely to have been corrected.

      And many of the -900ERs were built when Boeing still owned the facility that is now Spirit AeroSystems. It isn't clear who is responsible but Jon Ostrower is reporting that Boeing did tighten...

      there doesn't seem to be any "hinting" that I have read.
      The issue is manufacturing, not design.
      All of the -900ERs have been through overhauls so the issue, even if it existed at manufacturing, is likely to have been corrected.

      And many of the -900ERs were built when Boeing still owned the facility that is now Spirit AeroSystems. It isn't clear who is responsible but Jon Ostrower is reporting that Boeing did tighten fasteners on the opposite side of the aircraft from where the exit failed. That work presumably should have been by Spirit before the fuselage was shipped even if Boeing is responsible for checking everything before delivering the aircraft.

      And if you have to go back and look at the manufacturing of every part on every Boeing aircraft to ensure it was installed correctly, there is no telling how long the list of inspections and groundings will be.

      So far as the FAA and NTSB this is a recent problem related to manufacturing and not a design problem.

      If you have information otherwise, please provide your source

    2. STEFFL Gold

      ... isn't ongoing problems of soooooo many BOEING built aircrafts and total losses as well as fals investigations and trying to hide "the plane truth" enough to finally ground these olanes and get a COMPLETE check done of ALL these aircrafts!
      I'll remind your wife one day, if you were in one of these planes after it comes to a total loss, that ALL inspections or groundings were done to a complete satisfaction!

      ...

      ... isn't ongoing problems of soooooo many BOEING built aircrafts and total losses as well as fals investigations and trying to hide "the plane truth" enough to finally ground these olanes and get a COMPLETE check done of ALL these aircrafts!
      I'll remind your wife one day, if you were in one of these planes after it comes to a total loss, that ALL inspections or groundings were done to a complete satisfaction!

      The issue is there and not manufactured as you write!

      Wake up, and believe the fact, what has happend (not only once!) since any of these BOEING planes were approved to transport passengers!
      Count the number of total incidebts and accidents and then compare for yourself, if this issue is manufatured or the "plane truth"!?

      Hope you enjoy flying the 737 MAX family, i never will!

      BOEING has an aweful hide and don't tell the plane truth policy, for the last 40 years already! . . . and i bet, it will never change.

  7. FLLFLYER Guest

    From what I have read Boeing redesigned cockpit doors to blow open in a decompression.

    What is the logic there? Why would the cockpit door need to be open?

    1. UncleRonnie Member

      It's standard on Airbus too. It's to ensure same pressure throughout the fuselage.

  8. Brianair Guest

    At this point Boeing should start working on a clean sheet narrow body aircraft design. The 737 design is way past its expiration date.

    1. Tim Dunn Diamond

      the problem in this case isn't design but manufacturing.
      The NTSB is trying to figure out whether the problem originated w/ Spirit AeroSystems which builds the 737 fuselage (and exits) or Boeing but ultimately the problem is Boeing's.
      The Air Current (Jon Ostrower) says that UA has found 15 MAX 9s with improperly installed fasteners and bolts and AS has found several aircraft also.

      in a related note, Delta has apparently just exercised...

      the problem in this case isn't design but manufacturing.
      The NTSB is trying to figure out whether the problem originated w/ Spirit AeroSystems which builds the 737 fuselage (and exits) or Boeing but ultimately the problem is Boeing's.
      The Air Current (Jon Ostrower) says that UA has found 15 MAX 9s with improperly installed fasteners and bolts and AS has found several aircraft also.

      in a related note, Delta has apparently just exercised all of its remaining options for A220-300s, indicating they likely expect delays on their MAX 10 order and need to ensure that they have replacement aircraft when needed.

      The impact to the US and global airline industry for further delivery delays and groundings of Boeing aircraft is incredibly large.

  9. BoroBoy57 Guest

    I'm not trying to excuse corporate incompetence but I sure would like to see comments from the employees union in instances like this as they're on the production lines manufacturing these doggone things and not management.

  10. JustSaying Guest

    I am wondering if there are not 2 different versions of the 900 in service: One that has the plug in that space and another that doesn’t have the plug but is a regular exit door or if some don’t have a door at all. It would seem logical that if there are multiple versions that the plane that only the ones with plugs are grounded? I have seen on flight status since the incident that Alaska reported flying the 900. So what is the explanation for that?

  11. Tim Dunn Diamond

    very sad day for the United States. The largest exporter cannot get its products built and delivered at acceptable standards.
    The impact to AS and UA will be significant in terms of their ability to operate their networks but also in their finances for the first quarter at least. It is far from clear how the FAA will require them to inspect their aircraft sufficiently to allow them to return to service.
    Certification...

    very sad day for the United States. The largest exporter cannot get its products built and delivered at acceptable standards.
    The impact to AS and UA will be significant in terms of their ability to operate their networks but also in their finances for the first quarter at least. It is far from clear how the FAA will require them to inspect their aircraft sufficiently to allow them to return to service.
    Certification of the MAX 7 and 10 as well as the 777X will almost certainly be furthered delayed.

  12. MiDiRi Guest

    A loss of credibility of 1/2 of the commercial aircraft duopoly will in the LONG TERM (emphasis on LONG) only benefit COMAC and Airbus. How can we scoff at the budding Chinese-designed and manufactured commercial aircraft industry when the sole remaining American manufacturer has lost all industry and consumer confidence in its safety and quality, especially in light of the advances the Chinese auto industry has made in a relatively short period of time (with...

    A loss of credibility of 1/2 of the commercial aircraft duopoly will in the LONG TERM (emphasis on LONG) only benefit COMAC and Airbus. How can we scoff at the budding Chinese-designed and manufactured commercial aircraft industry when the sole remaining American manufacturer has lost all industry and consumer confidence in its safety and quality, especially in light of the advances the Chinese auto industry has made in a relatively short period of time (with the help of a healthy dose of industrial espionage and intellectual property theft)? If Boeing doesn't undergo a cultural revolution of its own, in a decade we will see it fade like American car manufacturers vis-a-vis Chinese auto manufacturers. Oh well - at least the defense side of Boeing will be artificially propped up by the DoD for the forseeable future.

  13. Rob Guest

    NTSB concludes investigation in Alaska Airlines incident:

    "That window wouldn’t have fallen out if the pilot had not taken off, further the risk could have been eliminated if the pilot had conducted appropriate quality assurance inspections throughout the entire manufacture and assembly of the aircraft. Thus the findings of our NTSB investigation, in cooperation with the FAA and Boeing, indicate this incident was solely due to pilot error.
    [...]
    Furthermore, the pilot was...

    NTSB concludes investigation in Alaska Airlines incident:

    "That window wouldn’t have fallen out if the pilot had not taken off, further the risk could have been eliminated if the pilot had conducted appropriate quality assurance inspections throughout the entire manufacture and assembly of the aircraft. Thus the findings of our NTSB investigation, in cooperation with the FAA and Boeing, indicate this incident was solely due to pilot error.
    [...]
    Furthermore, the pilot was found to have taken 600mg of ibuprofen for a fever in 1999, therefore we have concluded the pilot was too intoxicated with horrible drugs and substance abuse to safety operate the plane. The Boeing 737 max, being a very sophisticated and intelligent aircraft, recognized this and ejected the door in protest of being flown by a drug addicted lunatic.”

  14. Jim F. Guest

    Thanks for the update, Ben. In terms of culpability, is there evidence to determine which came first here; what I mean is, do we know for a fact whether airlines pushed Boeing to design an aircraft with the flexibility in seating configuration the MAX9 makes possible or did Boeing cut corners by designing a "one size fits all" fuselage that could be sold to as many airlines as possible?

    1. Albert Guest

      I don't think this is a conceptual problem - Airbus does it without any issues: https://mentourpilot.com/whats-going-on-with-the-doors-of-the-airbus-a321/

  15. GBSanDiego Guest

    ‘Boeing Door Blowout Reveals Cockpit Security Problems As Well’

    ‘That meant the pilots were subjected to the deafening wind and noise from the back of the plane—and also made the cockpit accessible to anyone inclined to try to force their way in.’

    National Transportation Safety Board chair, Jennifer Homendy, said “They [the pilot and copilot] had trouble hearing each other, they had trouble hearing air-traffic control and they had trouble communicating during the event.”

    Those...

    ‘Boeing Door Blowout Reveals Cockpit Security Problems As Well’

    ‘That meant the pilots were subjected to the deafening wind and noise from the back of the plane—and also made the cockpit accessible to anyone inclined to try to force their way in.’

    National Transportation Safety Board chair, Jennifer Homendy, said “They [the pilot and copilot] had trouble hearing each other, they had trouble hearing air-traffic control and they had trouble communicating during the event.”

    Those comments speak for themselves!

    1. FLLFLYER Guest

      From what I have read Boeing redesigned cockpit doors to blow open in a decompression.

      What is the logic there? Why would the cockpit door need to be open?

  16. Bruce Member

    Finally, Boeing's poor quality control, rushed production and focus on speed instead of thoroughness have caught up with them in a meaningful way. We have known for so long that practices on the factory floor have been shady at best, with priority being on speed and purposely signing off on stages without proper inspection.

    1. ConcordeBoy Diamond

      Pretty sure we figured that out when there was flotsam in Indonesia, followed by a smoking hole in the Ethiopian lowgrounds.

  17. Neogucky Guest

    Alaska might regret now to have sold-off all of its Airbus Jets, these would be a nice fit to catch up the slack of the grounded jets.

    1. canuck_in_ca Guest

      They sure will miss those 10 (basically brand-new) A321s just about now.

  18. Anonymous Guest

    Just convert all these plugged doors to an actual emergency exit door, problem solved!

    1. Jayceegee Member

      That's insane. Could you imagine the bedlam that would result? Adding an extra exit row could result in as many as six (SIX!) fewer seats per flight. Such a dramatic loss in capacity would eviscerate the airline's operating margins, doom the entire industry, and result in the collapse of modern civilized society.

      Besides, what could they possible do with the remaining 10-20 inches? Give customers more legroom? Increase the size of their galleys so...

      That's insane. Could you imagine the bedlam that would result? Adding an extra exit row could result in as many as six (SIX!) fewer seats per flight. Such a dramatic loss in capacity would eviscerate the airline's operating margins, doom the entire industry, and result in the collapse of modern civilized society.

      Besides, what could they possible do with the remaining 10-20 inches? Give customers more legroom? Increase the size of their galleys so that flight attendants can exhale while working? The mere suggestion is offensive.

    2. ahavavaha Guest

      dont give them ideas though. the reason this is a plug instead of an emergency exit is because US airlines don't config the plane as dense as some foreign carriers do.

      if forced to turn it into a true emergency exit, what's to stop the airlines from going to the denser configuration?

  19. JohnRossa Gold

    "If it ain't Tupolev, I ain't going!"

    1. Brianair Guest

      "If it ain't Comac, I ain't going back!"

  20. Mantis Member

    As a mechanical engineer, I find it highly unlikely that these bolts were loose when the airplane was new. There's much too much process, equipment, measurements, and follow up tests in production for me to believe that loose bolts are just sneaking by. More likely the bolts are backing out over time due to pressure cycles (just like bolts on tables and chairs loosen over time). It's thus a design flaw, not quality control, as...

    As a mechanical engineer, I find it highly unlikely that these bolts were loose when the airplane was new. There's much too much process, equipment, measurements, and follow up tests in production for me to believe that loose bolts are just sneaking by. More likely the bolts are backing out over time due to pressure cycles (just like bolts on tables and chairs loosen over time). It's thus a design flaw, not quality control, as they probably didn't have an appropriate secure method to keep the bolts from backing out over time.

    1. LOA Member

      There's nothing wrong with the design. I know the news media and blogs make it seem like if this plug design is a MAX specific thing (since it helps with views/clicks) but this design has been around for at least 15 years. There's so much service history without any blowout events to say that this design is good.

      My take is still lapse in quality control.

    2. Bobo Bolinski Guest

      What quality control?

      QC is the first or second place the bean-counters cut.

      And not just in Boeing, in virtually all big corporations, the first place they cut is customer service reps (fire them all, use bots and push people to automated systems as much as possible, outsource the few remaining absolutely necessary jobs to India, save a bundle). The next place they cut is in QC, since it's seen as "optional" and an...

      What quality control?

      QC is the first or second place the bean-counters cut.

      And not just in Boeing, in virtually all big corporations, the first place they cut is customer service reps (fire them all, use bots and push people to automated systems as much as possible, outsource the few remaining absolutely necessary jobs to India, save a bundle). The next place they cut is in QC, since it's seen as "optional" and an "expense that needs to be managed." This is how businesses work.

    3. Mantis Member

      @LOA
      I can't confirm that everything is the same with the MAX, and I doubt you can either. I'm sure there is something different with the MAX, maybe some small part of the design changed, or the material, or the supplier, and maybe the forces on the parts are different on the MAX. To say that nothing has changed with the wave of your hand seems naive. QC to me is the least likely...

      @LOA
      I can't confirm that everything is the same with the MAX, and I doubt you can either. I'm sure there is something different with the MAX, maybe some small part of the design changed, or the material, or the supplier, and maybe the forces on the parts are different on the MAX. To say that nothing has changed with the wave of your hand seems naive. QC to me is the least likely since this is aerospace, for every process there is a check, and audits. To say that bolts never backed out before is also presumptive, they probably did but not to the extent that the door blows off. Remember, this airplane had multiple sensor warnings that were ignored, it was even taken off ETOPS, before this event happened.

      I can't say with certainty, but I'd put 3:1 odds that the bolts were not loose initially, but backed out over time due to either some failure by fatigue, or failure due to bolts backing out over time due to vibration and pressure cycles.

      @Bobo
      OK Michael Moore...yeah corporations bad. Those darn bean counters, always cutting QC, lmao. Your post reads like an 18 year old after his first semester at college.

    4. ConcordeBoy Diamond

      but this design has been around for at least 15 years. There's so much service history without any blowout events to say that this design is good.

      Meh, the 737 had been in service for 23yrs before the (deadly) design flaw in the rudder manifested.

      Time (both temporal and service-hour) doesn't necessarily negate structural flaw/compromise.

    5. BradStPete Diamond

      But this aircraft was in service for about 6 weeks.... I understand the point you are making but this was essentially a brand new plane.

  21. W Gold

    When the investigation into the MAX 8 was occurring, it was revealed by Boeing employees (both current and former) that the new Boeing leadership had purely focused on profits and stock market value. In order to reach those goals, they ramped up 737 MAX production to the point where the people building the planes could not keep up. The production line was stretched beyond what it could handle, and the people assembling the planes had...

    When the investigation into the MAX 8 was occurring, it was revealed by Boeing employees (both current and former) that the new Boeing leadership had purely focused on profits and stock market value. In order to reach those goals, they ramped up 737 MAX production to the point where the people building the planes could not keep up. The production line was stretched beyond what it could handle, and the people assembling the planes had communicated this to the Boeing leadership (which was ignored at the time).

    I remember hearing interviews of these employees saying how they were rushed to complete the airframe, and they warned that this will eventually lead to shortcuts being taken in the building process, or it will lead to mistakes or oversight. They warned that this posed a safety issue.

    By the looks of what we know so far, it seems Boeing did cut corners here. My theory is that due to the pressure of getting these airframes completed quickyl, either the builders forgot to tighten these bolts all the way, or they decided it was not needed to save time and meet the deadlines and pressure by management.

  22. Lance Guest

    If I were operating an airline today, I'd be really hard pressed to rationalize flying any Boeing jet that was manufactured in the past 6-8 years. It's become a crap shoot and people don't want to gamble with their lives in order to fly somewhere.

    1. STEFFL Gold

      make it last 40 years!
      Just look up incidents of failing parts or droduction by BOEING, blownout doors, Cargodoors, windows or just simply missing bolts or screws, that did lead into disasters.
      Airbus . . , it's just a simply more quality work there!
      BOEING shoukd keep building military planes, but NEVER any passenger planes and up until today, it shows that in EVERY single plane in the air.
      That company...

      make it last 40 years!
      Just look up incidents of failing parts or droduction by BOEING, blownout doors, Cargodoors, windows or just simply missing bolts or screws, that did lead into disasters.
      Airbus . . , it's just a simply more quality work there!
      BOEING shoukd keep building military planes, but NEVER any passenger planes and up until today, it shows that in EVERY single plane in the air.
      That company hardly ever learned from the past, but PR is all,just to keep the public quiet and make them think, it's a trusted brand!
      .... it is NOT!
      .... Investigations were NEVER done to the best and fullest, 767 cash Phuket, Thailand of Lauda is the best example, IF not the airline owner back then pushed the complete investigation, REALITY would have never been published. BOEING failed then and still does today!
      ... as we can NOW AGAIN all read and see on the latest happenings!

  23. Dan Guest

    Seriously, screw Calhoun and screw every last glorified accountant who came over from McDonnell Douglas and effed up this once great engineering company.

    They should fix this mess and then spin off commecial aviation. The current Chicago/DC based management clearly has no idea how to do things that don't involve a fat gov't contract.

    1. Jayceegee Member

      To be fair, the US government has done a pretty great job of holding Boeing to account for failing to accurately predict cost overruns and delays in recent years... It was about time that the DOD upped their game from a procurement perspective.

    2. Robert Fahr Guest

      SW is the most vulnerable with all 737 fleet with hundreds of MAX -700 and -800 on order. (Yes I know the most recent issue is the -900).

  24. UncleRonnie Member

    Flying Max 9 LAX to OGG in April. Just checked my booking on the App and it says "Your flight is subject to schedule change, please call Alaska Airlines Customer Services...."

    I call them: "Hello, welcome to Alaska Airlines, you are in a queue and subject to a wait time of approx. 1 hour and 58 minutes....."

    Happy days.

    1. UncleRonnie Guest

      Update: got through to CS and they said my flight wasn’t direct anymore and was now via SFR. Cancelled and got full refund. Person on the phone said:”We are abnormally busy today….”

      Switched to the A330 with Hawaiian.

    2. STEFFL Gold

      GREAT decission!
      It should NEVER be the price, but instead the quality and safety of a flight you take.
      Supporting such a screwed up Company as BOEING is, is a big mistake.
      Liars, cheaters and profit over everything else!
      Even and older A330 is much better then a brandnew 737MAX 9 if it's not constructed as it shiukd be.
      Remember, you lay your life in such a fragile plane!

  25. Trey Guest

    ["safety of flying public"] As member of flying public I would feel much safer if they remedy this by installing the original Emergency door and taking out row 26 than any redesigned plug or bolts. (probably won't happen that way though)..

    1. UncleRonnie Member

      Be interesting to know what the price difference is per new airframe to an airline is for one with emergency doors vs plugs.

    2. W Gold

      I don't know if the price difference is significant for new airframes (especially given how most airline's orders are bought in bulk and recieve significant discounts). I'd assume the main cost is the upkeep of that additional emergency door (including maintaining/inspecting the door, making sure it works, the additional lighting and equipment costs - such as the additional slides and rafts and replacing them every so often). I also assume the door may add additional...

      I don't know if the price difference is significant for new airframes (especially given how most airline's orders are bought in bulk and recieve significant discounts). I'd assume the main cost is the upkeep of that additional emergency door (including maintaining/inspecting the door, making sure it works, the additional lighting and equipment costs - such as the additional slides and rafts and replacing them every so often). I also assume the door may add additional weight to the plane with all of the additional mechanics, so having a plug instead saves money on fuel if the door is not needed.

    3. Michael Member

      Whether it's covered inside the cabin or not, that emergency exit door is a plug, just like the #3 door on the A321.

    4. Trey Guest

      The main cost will be for the airlines if they reinstall the Emergency doors, in loosing at least 2 seats (possibly 6), which I'm sure they'd go after from Boeing. Loosing 6 seats may still be better than having these birds sit on the tarmac for the next 6 months!

  26. IrishAlan Diamond

    Since this is a quality control issue, one has to wonder what other issues may be found during inspections of the MAX-9s? And will those QC issues extend to other Boeing aircraft manufactured around the same time period?

    Also, did AS actually transfer all of their Airbus aircraft to another carrier in October? Or are they parked somewhere? I’m wondering if the MAX-9s are grounded for many weeks if AS has the option to mitigate...

    Since this is a quality control issue, one has to wonder what other issues may be found during inspections of the MAX-9s? And will those QC issues extend to other Boeing aircraft manufactured around the same time period?

    Also, did AS actually transfer all of their Airbus aircraft to another carrier in October? Or are they parked somewhere? I’m wondering if the MAX-9s are grounded for many weeks if AS has the option to mitigate it’s depleted fleet by returning the Airbus aircraft to service?

    1. jedipenguin Guest

      I believe some of Alaska's A321's are going over to American

  27. Ole Guest

    Some one needs to launch an investigation of FAA. They have been corrupt, incompetent and in shambles for years now. They personally are responsible for the deaths of 346 innocent people and yet haven’t faced enough scrutiny or punishment.

    1. Zdfld Guest

      Saying the FAA is responsible before Boeing is.... something.

      The FAA could indeed use more funding and more support to hold Boeing to task. Unfortunately, they won't get funding, and push comes to shove, the US doesn't have a great track record of holding companies accountable.

    2. Mike Mohler Guest

      You can thank all the "government is the problem" idiots for these issues. Republicans have been at war with the very idea of government and regulation for decades now, worshiping "the magic of the free market" (also knows as The Race To The Bottom). This is the inevitable result.

    3. Jayceegee Member

      I don't think there are many examples of the FAA being corrupt so much as they haven't been as effective as they should be when it comes to oversight. You have to remember that a big part of the reason why the Max series was exempted from regulatory review comes down to insufficient funding... and the fact that Boeing deliberately withheld information and mischaracterized the number engineering changes between the 737-NG and the 737-Max.

    4. Ole Guest

      The difference between other regulatory bodies and FAA is any negligence or lack of oversight can directly cause lives. I agree about the lack of funding and the small government morons but at the same time I don’t see any FAA employee/leader makes noise in media about lack of funding from both parties.

  28. Marcus Guest

    Who'd of thought pushing a 60+ year old design far beyond its original specification would be so bad huh?

    1. Nat Guest

      I agree re MCAS but tightening bolts has nothing to do with the age of the design. New designs also have bolts that could be left loose. In this case it's just bad QC.

    2. Not Boeing Guest

      What does re-using a tried-and-tested design have to do with screws not being tightly fastened during manufacturing? The problem is the lack of QA, not the lack of originality or innovation.

    3. chasgoose Guest

      Even if Boeing had designed a brand new plane from the ground up with the same size, this would still be a potential issue simply because its potential capacity sits between the threshold for extra exit doors.

      Boeing is almost certainly still at fault for this, but it seems to be a QC issue, not a design one.

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canuck_in_ca Guest

They sure will miss those 10 (basically brand-new) A321s just about now.

6
JohnRossa Gold

"If it ain't Tupolev, I ain't going!"

6
Neogucky Guest

Alaska might regret now to have sold-off all of its Airbus Jets, these would be a nice fit to catch up the slack of the grounded jets.

4
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