Weeks after the first deadly crash of Boeing’s 737 Max, there are new details about a meeting shortly after, where pilots from American Airlines secretly recorded Boeing executive as they pressed them to urgently work on a fix. ABC’s Serena Marshall has the new audio.
UNITED STATES (WSYR-TV) — After the Lion Air plane crash that killed 189 people in Indonesia last year, pilots who fly the 737 Max aircraft wanted answers.
The Dallas Morning News obtained audio, secretly recorded, of discussions between American Airlines pilots and Boeing engineers over the safety of a new system on the plane called MCAS, that could nose down the aircraft. They weren’t even aware of the system and feared it may have contributed to the crash.
The audio was recorded during a meeting last November in Dallas.
The unidentified Boeing official said pilots weren’t informed of the MCAS system because they were trying not to “overload the crews” with information.
“I don’t know that understanding this system would’ve changed the outcome on this. A million miles you’re going to maybe fly this airplane, maybe once you’re going to see this ever,” the Boeing official could be heard saying.
But if activated, MCAS could repeatedly nose down the aircraft.
Boeing issued a bulletin, but the pilots wanted more done.
Four months later, there was another deadly crash, this one in Ethiopia, and carriers worldwide grounded their 737 Max fleets.
Congress is now investigating how the plane passed safety checks.
“One thing is clear right now: The FAA has a credibility problem,” said Rick Larsen, House Aviation Subcommittee Chairman.
That credibility is also subject to an investigation by the department’s inspector general and a Senate committee examining the agency’s relationship with Boeing.
Boeing is also the subject of a criminal investigation by the justice department.
As Boeing continues to work with global regulators to fix that software and get the plane back in the air.