Boeing 737 Max: The beginning of Boeing demise?

Dynamite Joe

Dynamite Joe

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Ralph Nader, whose grandniece died in latest 737 Max crash, says the FAA is in Boeing's pocket
Ralph Nader, whose grandniece died in latest 737 Max crash, says the FAA is in Boeing’s pocket
PUBLISHED 2 HOURS AGOUPDATED 26 MIN AGO


KEY POINTS
  • Consumer advocate Ralph Nader is calling for a recall of Boeing’s 737 Max jets.
  • Nader’s grandniece was killed in the March crash of a 737 Max in Ethiopia, which happened five months after a similar crash in Indonesia.
  • In the wake of the Ethiopia crash, the FAA and other regulators around the world grounded 737 Max models.




Ralph Nader: The FAA is a consulting firm for airlines not a regulator

Consumer advocate Ralph Nader, whose grandniece was killed in the March crash of a 737 Max jet in Ethiopia, is accusing the Federal Aviation Administration of being beholden to Boeing.
The FAA is hosting dozens of international aviation regulators in Texas on Thursday to discuss the ongoing review of the Boeing 737 Max jets, which the agency and others around the world grounded in March after two deadly crashes that happened less than five months apart.

In an interview with CNBC’s Phil LeBeau, Acting FAA Administrator Dan Elwell reiterated that the agency has no set timetable for allowing the Max planes to return to service.
Elwell also responded to Nader’s criticism, saying he has “great respect” for Nader’s work on consumer product safety. But the FAA chief said on “Squawk on the Street ” that his agency is the expert on whether or not to green light the Max for service again.
Nader, in an earlier “Squawk Box” interview Thursday, called on federal regulators to recall the jets, saying the issue is not about how much the software may “overpower the pilot” or “empower the pilot.” He said: “The basic problem is the design of the plane. And there is no way you can fix that without recalling the plane, the way they recall cars.”
Some U.S. aviation officials believe a bird strike may have contributed to the crash in Ethiopia, feeding faulty data into one of the plane’s autopilot systems. Crash investigators have indicated that bad sensor data triggered an anti-stall system aboard the Ethiopian Airlines flight that went down shortly after takeoff, a similar scenario to the crash of a Lion Air jet in Indonesia.
“In all the product defects that I have worked on over the years, I have never seen so many whistleblowers [and] so many authentic aerospace experts condemning the Boeing practice here,” Nader added. “The FAA has been in the pockets of the Boeing company for years — pressured by Congress and the White House on both parties to cut budgets, to cut staff, [and] reduce their talent pool to oversee Boeing.”

Nader said he sent letters to the FAA and Boeing and never got a response. “Boeing had a good record for 10 years or so. But that does not allow Boeing to have any free crashes that are preventable by standard aeronautical safety stability.”
Nader’s grandniece, Samya Stumo from Massachusetts, was among the 157 people killed in the Ethiopian Airlines crash shortly after takeoff from Addis Ababa. The other crash involving a 737 Max was in October, when a Lion Air flight went down in Indonesia’s Java Sea, killing 189 people.
Boeing was not immediately available to respond to CNBC’s request for comment.
— CNBC’s Leslie Josephs and The Associated Press contributed to this report.
 
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    Inspectors say FAA pressures them to ignore critical plane problems: "The flying public needs to wake up"


    Two Federal Aviation Administration inspectors – each with a decade of experience with the FAA – say they have an urgent message for U.S. travelers: "people's lives" could be at stake. They told CBS News "the flying public needs to wake up" and that people need to know flying "is not as safe as it could be." Both asked to remain anonymous because they fear losing their jobs for speaking out.

    "I've had reports that I had entered into our database one day were there and the next morning, they're gone," one told "CBS This Morning" co-host Tony Dokoupil.

    They say managers at the FAA pressure inspectors like them to ignore critical safety issues like corrosion or making sure vendors were FAA compliant and retaliated if inspectors refused to back off.

    "I've been flat out told to back off," one inspector said. "I've had airlines contact my management and ask them not to assign me any inspections to that airline."

    The other inspector said they've "repeatedly" been punished for finding a problem and reporting it and they're not alone: "It's very widespread."

    A 2016 Inspector General's report echoes their concerns. It found that another FAA inspector, Charles Banks, was pressured to back off an airline then was punished by management. When reached by CBS News, Banks confirmed that he was punished by the FAA for filing reports of problems with Miami Air International.

    Miami Air International is a charter service with about a thousand government contracts worth more than $200 million in just the past five years. Earlier this month, one of its charters – carrying U.S. military troops from Guantanamo Bay, Cuba – made a crash landing in Jacksonville, Florida. No one died and the cause isn't yet known. But that wasn't the first time the company has had trouble ferrying troops. In 2017, the airline had multiple problems with vendor fuel lines – problems Banks had flagged in his earlier reports.

    Banks told CBS News that he still works as an FAA inspector but has been removed off Miami Air International.

    The same inspector who said people's lives are at stake said that while the FAA should be serving the flying public, in reality, they've "heard airlines referred to as customers, as stakeholders."

    "I've also heard inspectors say at 'my' airline at 'our airline.' It's not my airline," they said.

    In 2015, the FAA adopted a compliance program focused on "mutual cooperation" with airlines instead of "a traditional, enforcement-focused regulatory model."

    When asked if the FAA is too cozy with the airlines, the other inspector we spoke with said, "I think they are leaning more towards the airlines, the upper management is. Yes." That inspector said they believe there are airlines out there today that should be fined.

    "Are there airlines out there today that you believe should be grounded?" Dokoupil asked.

    "I think there's a few airlines out there we need to take a hard look at doing that to," they said.

    The FAA declined CBS News' request for an interview, but told CBS News that it "has a comprehensive safety oversight system that encourages the sharing of information to identify problems and ensure they are fixed." The agency also wrote in a statement "the U.S. aviation system has a safety record that is unprecedented in history" with only one domestic death in the past 10 years.

    One of the inspectors said, "We're on the verge of an issue happening …. we're talking about a crash inside the United States borders."

    They both pointed to incidents like the Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines crashes – both related to U.S. manufacturer Boeing whose own relationship with the FAA is under scrutiny as indicators of what could happen. They hope that what they told CBS News will be a wake-up call.

    "I'm here to make sure there's no blood on my hands."

    Like the FAA, Miami Air International declined our request for an interview. In a statement, it referred CBS News to the NTSB about the crash landing in Jacksonville and said it has procedures in place to comply with FAA requirements.

    Since the FAA put its compliance model in place, enforcement actions like fines and penalties fell by 70 percent between 2014 and 2017.
     
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    Boeing Built Deadly Assumptions Into 737 Max, Blind to a Late Design Change


    After Boeing removed one of the sensors from an automated flight system on its 737 Max, the jet’s designers and regulators still proceeded as if there would be two.

    SEATTLE — The fatal flaws with Boeing’s 737 Max can be traced to a breakdown late in the plane’s development, when test pilots, engineers and regulators were left in the dark about a fundamental overhaul to an automated system that would ultimately play a role in two crashes.
    A year before the plane was finished, Boeing made the system more aggressive and riskier. While the original version relied on data from at least two types of sensors, the ultimate used just one, leaving the system without a critical safeguard. In both doomed flights, pilots struggled as a single damaged sensor sent the planes into irrecoverable nose-dives within minutes, killing 346 people and prompting regulators around the world to ground the Max.
    But many people involved in building, testing and approving the system, known as MCAS, said they hadn’t fully understood the changes. Current and former employees at Boeing and the Federal Aviation Administration who spoke with The New York Times said they had assumed the system relied on more sensors and would rarely, if ever, activate. Based on those misguided assumptions, many made critical decisions, affecting design, certification and training.
    “It doesn’t make any sense,” said a former test pilot who worked on the Max. “I wish I had the full story.”
    While prosecutors and lawmakers try to piece together what went wrong, the current and former employees point to the single, fateful decision to change the system, which led to a series of design mistakes and regulatory oversights. As Boeing rushed to get the plane done, many of the employees say, they didn’t recognize the importance of the decision. They described a compartmentalized approach, each of them focusing on a small part of the plane. The process left them without a complete view of a critical and ultimately dangerous system.
    The company also played down the scope of the system to regulators. Boeing never disclosed the revamp of MCAS to Federal Aviation Administration officials involved in determining pilot training needs, according to three agency officials. When Boeing asked to remove the description of the system from the pilot’s manual, the F.A.A. agreed. As a result, most Max pilots did not know about the software until after the first crash, in October.
    “Boeing has no higher priority than the safety of the flying public,” a company spokesman, Gordon Johndroe, said in a statement.
    He added that Boeing and regulators had followed standard procedures. “The F.A.A. considered the final configuration and operating parameters of MCAS during Max certification, and concluded that it met all certification and regulatory requirements,” Mr. Johndroe said.
    At first, MCAS — Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System — wasn’t a very risky piece of software. The system would trigger only in rare conditions, nudging down the nose of the plane to make the Max handle more smoothly during high-speed moves. And it relied on data from multiple sensors measuring the plane’s acceleration and its angle to the wind, helping to ensure that the software didn’t activate erroneously.
    Then Boeing engineers reconceived the system, expanding its role to avoid stalls in all types of situations. They allowed the software to operate throughout much more of the flight. They enabled it to aggressively push down the nose of the plane. And they used only data about the plane’s angle, removing some of the safeguards.
    The disasters might have been avoided, if employees and regulators had a better understanding of MCAS.
    A test pilot who originally advocated for the expansion of the system didn’t understand how the changes affected its safety. Safety analysts said they would have acted differently if they had known it used just one sensor. Regulators didn’t conduct a formal safety assessment of the new version of MCAS.
    The current and former employees, many of whom spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the continuing investigations, said that after the first crash, they were stunned to discover MCAS relied on a single sensor.
    “That’s nuts,” said an engineer who helped design MCAS.
    “I’m shocked,” said a safety analyst who scrutinized it.
    “To me, it seems like somebody didn’t understand what they were doing,” said an engineer who assessed the system’s sensors.
    MCAS Is Born
    In 2012, the chief test pilot for the Max had a problem.
    During the early development of the 737 Max, the pilot, Ray Craig, a silver-haired retired Navy airman, was trying out high-speed situations on a flight simulator, like maneuvers to avoid an obstacle or to escape a powerful vortex from another plane. While such moves might never be necessary for the pilot of a passenger plane, the F.A.A. requires that a jet handle well in those situations.
    But the plane wasn’t flying smoothly, partly because of the Max’s bigger engines. To fix the issue, Boeing decided to use a piece of software. The system was meant to work in the background, so pilots effectively wouldn’t know it was there.
    Mr. Craig, who had been with Boeing since 1988, didn’t like it, according to one person involved in the testing. An old-school pilot, he eschewed systems that take control from pilots and would have preferred an aerodynamic fix such as vortex generators, thin fins on the wings. But engineers who tested the Max design in a wind tunnel weren’t convinced they would work, the person said.
    Mr. Craig relented. Such high-speed situations were so rare that he figured the software would never actually kick in.
    To ensure it didn’t misfire, engineers initially designed MCAS to trigger when the plane exceeded at least two separate thresholds, according to three people who worked on the 737 Max. One involved the plane’s angle to the wind, and the other involved so-called G-force, or the force on the plane that typically comes from accelerating.

    A Boeing 737-800 flight simulator. When Mr. Craig simulated high-speed maneuvers for the Max, it didn’t fly smoothly, so Boeing settled on MCAS for a fix.CreditAviation-Images.com, via Getty Images


    A Boeing 737-800 flight simulator. When Mr. Craig simulated high-speed maneuvers for the Max, it didn’t fly smoothly, so Boeing settled on MCAS for a fix.CreditAviation-Images.com, via Getty Images

    The Max would need to hit an exceedingly high G-force that passenger planes would probably never experience. For the jet’s angle, the system took data from the angle-of-attack sensor. The sensor, several inches long, is essentially a small wind vane affixed to the jet’s fuselage.
    Adding More Power
    On a rainy day in late January 2016, thousands of Boeing employees gathered at a runway next to the 737 factory in Renton, Wash. They cheered as the first Max, nicknamed the Spirit of Renton, lifted off for its maiden test flight.
    “The flight was a success,” Ed Wilson, the new chief test pilot for the Max, said in a news release at the time. Mr. Wilson, who had tested Boeing fighter jets, had replaced Mr. Craig the previous year.
    “The 737 Max just felt right in flight, giving us complete confidence that this airplane will meet our customers’ expectations,” he said.
    But a few weeks later, Mr. Wilson and his co-pilot began noticing that something was off, according to a person with direct knowledge of the flights. The Max wasn’t handling well when nearing stalls at low speeds.
    In a meeting at Boeing Field in Seattle, Mr. Wilson told engineers that the issue would need to be fixed. He and his co-pilot proposed MCAS, the person said.
    The change didn’t elicit much debate in the group, which included just a handful of people. It was considered “a run-of-the-mill adjustment,” according to the person. Instead, the group mostly discussed the logistics of how MCAS would be used in the new scenarios.
    “I don’t recall ever having any real debates over whether it was a good idea or not,” the person said.
    The change proved pivotal. Expanding the use of MCAS to lower-speed situations required removing the G-force threshold. MCAS now needed to work at low speeds so G-force didn’t apply.
    The change meant that a single angle-of-attack sensor was the lone guard against a misfire. Although modern 737 jets have two angle-of-attack sensors, the final version of MCAS took data from just one.

    Ed Wilson, right, with his co-pilot, Craig Bomben, after the first Max test flight in 2016.CreditElaine Thompson/Associated Press


    Ed Wilson, right, with his co-pilot, Craig Bomben, after the first Max test flight in 2016.CreditElaine Thompson/Associated Press
    Using MCAS at lower speeds also required increasing the power of the system. When a plane is flying slowly, flight controls are less sensitive, and far more movement is needed to steer. Think of turning a car’s steering wheel at 20 miles an hour versus 70.
    The original version of MCAS could move the stabilizer — the part of the tail that controls the vertical direction of the jet — a maximum of about 0.6 degrees in about 10 seconds. The new version could move the stabilizer up to 2.5 degrees in 10 seconds.
    Test pilots aren’t responsible for dealing with the ramifications of such changes. Their job is to ensure the plane handles smoothly. Other colleagues are responsible for making the changes, and still others for assessing their impact on safety.
    Boeing declined to say whether the changes had prompted a new internal safety analysis.
    While the F.A.A. officials in charge of training didn’t know about the changes, another arm of the agency involved in certification did. But it did not conduct a safety analysis on the changes.
    The F.A.A. had already approved the previous version of MCAS. And the agency’s rules didn’t require it to take a second look because the changes didn’t affect how the plane operated in extreme situations.
    “The F.A.A. was aware of Boeing’s MCAS design during the certification of the 737 Max,” the agency said in a statement. “Consistent with regulatory requirements, the agency evaluated data and conducted flight tests within the normal flight envelope that included MCAS activation in low-speed stall and other flight conditions.”
    ‘External Events’
    After engineers installed the second version of MCAS, Mr. Wilson and his co-pilot took the 737 Max for a spin.
    The flights were uneventful. They tested two potential failures of MCAS: a high-speed maneuver in which the system doesn’t trigger, and a low-speed stall when it activates but then freezes. In both cases, the pilots were able to easily fly the jet, according to a person with knowledge of the flights.
    In those flights, they did not test what would happen if MCAS activated as a result of a faulty angle-of-attack sensor — a problem in the two crashes.
    Boeing engineers did consider such a possibility in their safety analysis of the original MCAS. They classified the event as “hazardous,” one rung below the most serious designation of catastrophic, according to two people. In regulatory-speak, it meant that MCAS could trigger erroneously less often than once in 10 million flight hours.

    Boeing Max fuselages on their way to an assembly plant. The company declined to say whether it had conducted a new safety analysis of the revised MCAS.CreditWilliam Campbell/Corbis, via Getty Images


    Boeing Max fuselages on their way to an assembly plant. The company declined to say whether it had conducted a new safety analysis of the revised MCAS.CreditWilliam Campbell/Corbis, via Getty Images

    That probability may have underestimated the risk of so-called external events that have damaged sensors in the past, such as collisions with birds, bumps from ramp stairs or mechanics’ stepping on them. While part of the assessment considers such incidents, they are not included in the probability. Investigators suspect the angle-of-attack sensor was hit on the doomed Ethiopian Airlines flight in March.
    Bird strikes on angle-of-attack sensors are relatively common.
    A Times review of two F.A.A. databases found hundreds of reports of bent, cracked, sheared-off, poorly installed or otherwise malfunctioning angle-of-attack sensors on commercial aircraft over three decades.
    Since 1990, one database has recorded 1,172 instances when birds — meadowlarks, geese, sandpipers, pelicans and turkey vultures, among others — damaged sensors of various kinds, with 122 strikes on angle-of-attack vanes. The other database showed 85 problems with angle-of-attack sensors on Boeing aircraft, including 38 on 737s since 1995.
    And the public databases don’t necessarily capture the extent of incidents involving angle-of-attack sensors, since the F.A.A. has additional information. “I feel confidence in saying that there’s a lot more that were struck,” said Richard Dolbeer, a wildlife specialist who has spent over 20 years studying the issue at the United States Department of Agriculture, which tracks the issue for the F.A.A.
    A Simple Request
    On March 30, 2016, Mark Forkner, the Max’s chief technical pilot, sent an email to senior F.A.A. officials with a seemingly innocuous request: Would it be O.K. to remove MCAS from the pilot’s manual?
    The officials, who helped determine pilot training needs, had been briefed on the original version of MCAS months earlier. Mr. Forkner and Boeing never mentioned to them that MCAS was in the midst of an overhaul, according to the three F.A.A. officials.
    Under the impression that the system was relatively benign and rarely used, the F.A.A. eventually approved Mr. Forkner’s request, the three officials said.
    Boeing wanted to limit changes to the Max, from previous versions of the 737. Anything major could have required airlines to spend millions of dollars on additional training. Boeing, facing competitive pressure from Airbus, tried to avoid that.
    Mr. Forkner, a former F.A.A. employee, was at the front lines of this effort. As the chief technical pilot, he was the primary liaison with the F.A.A. on training and worked on the pilot’s manual.
    “The pressure on us,” said Rick Ludtke, a cockpit designer on the Max, “was huge.”
    “And that all got funneled through Mark,” Mr. Ludtke added. “And the pushback and resistance from the F.A.A. got funneled through Mark.”

    Federal Aviation Administration officials said Boeing’s request to remove MCAS from the pilot’s manual didn’t mention that the system was being overhauled.CreditJason Redmond/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images


    Federal Aviation Administration officials said Boeing’s request to remove MCAS from the pilot’s manual didn’t mention that the system was being overhauled.CreditJason Redmond/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

    Like others, Mr. Forkner may have had an imperfect understanding of MCAS.
    Technical pilots at Boeing like him previously flew planes regularly, two former employees said. “Then the company made a strategic change where they decided tech pilots would no longer be active pilots,” Mr. Ludtke said.
    Mr. Forkner largely worked on flight simulators, which didn’t fully mimic MCAS.
    It is unclear whether Mr. Forkner, now a pilot for Southwest Airlines, was aware of the changes to the system.
    Mr. Forkner’s attorney, David Gerger, said his client did not mislead the F.A.A. “Mark is an Air Force veteran who put safety first and was transparent in his work,” Mr. Gerger said.
    “In thousands of tests, nothing like this had ever happened,” he said. “Based on what he was told and what he knew, he never dreamed that it could.”
    The F.A.A. group that worked with Mr. Forkner made some decisions based on an incomplete view of the system. It never tested a malfunctioning sensor, according to the three officials. It didn’t require additional training.
    William Schubbe, a senior F.A.A. official who worked with the training group, told pilots and airlines in an April meeting in Washington, D.C., that Boeing had underplayed MCAS, according to a recording reviewed by The Times.
    “The way the system was presented to the F.A.A.,” Mr. Schubbe said, “the Boeing Corporation said this thing is so transparent to the pilot that there’s no need to demonstrate any kind of failing.”
    The F.A.A. officials involved in training weren’t the only ones operating with outdated information.
    An April 2017 maintenance manual that Boeing provided to airlines refers to the original version of MCAS. By that point, Boeing had started delivering the planes. The current manual is updated.
    Boeing continued to defend MCAS and its reliance on a single sensor after the first crash, involving Indonesia’s Lion Air.
    At a tense meeting with the pilots’ union at American Airlines in November, Boeing executives dismissed concerns. “It’s been reported that it’s a single point failure, but it is not considered by design or certification a single point,” said Mike Sinnett, a Boeing vice president, according to a recording of the meeting.
    His reasoning? The pilots were the backup.
    “Because the function and the trained pilot work side by side and are part of the system,” he said.
    Four months later, a second 737 Max crashed in Ethiopia. Within days, the Max was grounded around the world.
    As part of the fix, Boeing has reworked MCAS to more closely resemble the first version. It will be less aggressive, and it will rely on two sensors.
     
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    Ralph Nader Says Boeing 737 Max Is Flawed and Should Never Fly Again

    Consumer advocate Ralph Nader said the larger engines mounted to the Boeing 737 Max represented a design flaw and called for the plane to be permanently grounded.


    The 737 Max “must never fly again,” Nader said. “It’s not a matter of software. It’s a matter of structural design defect: the plane’s engines are too much for the traditional fuselage.”
    Speaking at an aviation safety event in Washington, Nader lambasted Boeing Co. for designing the 737 Max as yet another revision to an airframe that was first built in the 1960’s, rather than designing a new plane from scratch.

    Those larger engines -- mounted higher on the 737’s wing than the previous version of the jet -- altered how the plane flies in certain circumstances. That led Boeing to install the automated flight system that malfunctioned in two fatal crashes by the 737 Max since October, killing 346 people, including Nader’s grandniece.

    Ralph Nader


    Nader also said Boeing’s top leaders should resign, adding, “Good heavens, they would’ve resigned in 24 hours in Japan out of shame.”
    The company is working with regulators on a software fix that will alter the flight control system to keep malfunctions such as the one linked to the two crashes from sending planes into uncontrollable dives.
    “We extend our deepest condolences to Mr. Nader and to all the families and loved ones of those lost in the accidents on Ethiopian Flight 302 and Lion Air Flight 610,” Boeing spokesman Charles Bickers said in an email. “Safety is our top priority as we make the changes necessary to return the MAX to service.”
     
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    Ralph Nader Says Boeing 737 Max Is Flawed and Should Never Fly Again

    Consumer advocate Ralph Nader said the larger engines mounted to the Boeing 737 Max represented a design flaw and called for the plane to be permanently grounded.


    The 737 Max “must never fly again,” Nader said. “It’s not a matter of software. It’s a matter of structural design defect: the plane’s engines are too much for the traditional fuselage.”
    Speaking at an aviation safety event in Washington, Nader lambasted Boeing Co. for designing the 737 Max as yet another revision to an airframe that was first built in the 1960’s, rather than designing a new plane from scratch.

    Those larger engines -- mounted higher on the 737’s wing than the previous version of the jet -- altered how the plane flies in certain circumstances. That led Boeing to install the automated flight system that malfunctioned in two fatal crashes by the 737 Max since October, killing 346 people, including Nader’s grandniece.

    Ralph Nader


    Nader also said Boeing’s top leaders should resign, adding, “Good heavens, they would’ve resigned in 24 hours in Japan out of shame.”
    The company is working with regulators on a software fix that will alter the flight control system to keep malfunctions such as the one linked to the two crashes from sending planes into uncontrollable dives.
    “We extend our deepest condolences to Mr. Nader and to all the families and loved ones of those lost in the accidents on Ethiopian Flight 302 and Lion Air Flight 610,” Boeing spokesman Charles Bickers said in an email. “Safety is our top priority as we make the changes necessary to return the MAX to service.”
    I wonder what does Ralph Nader know about building airplanes.
     
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    I wonder what does Ralph Nader know about building airplanes.
    As much as he knows about building automobiles.
    If I were you I’d remove the airbags and seat belts from your car and refuse to breathe clean air and drink clean water in protest against him.
    And don’t forget to fly Boeing’s shoddy airplanes.
     
    vegojimbo

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    I wonder what does Ralph Nader know about building airplanes.
    what he is saying has been also said by many aviation experts. The 737 Max's problem is structural which Boeing is trying to fix with software instead of changing the design of the plane. Eventually, more problems will arise, and more people will die just to protect the greed of some big execs at Boeing and the FAA.

    Fixing a hardware fault with software should never be accepted when lives are at stake, but this is our world where money matters more than lives.
     
    proIsrael-nonIsraeli

    proIsrael-nonIsraeli

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    As much as he knows about building automobiles.
    If I were you I’d remove the airbags and seat belts from your car and refuse to breathe clean air and drink clean water in protest against him.
    And don’t forget to fly Boeing’s shoddy airplanes.
    Nonsense, think better - Nader does not offer to add air bag a car, Nader wants to kill entire car.
     
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    Nonsense, think better - Nader does not offer to add air bag a car, Nader wants to kill entire car.
    He wants to kill the Killer Max just like he killed the Killer Corvair "unsafe at any speed" You have a problem with that?...

    If you don't have a mirror to look at yourself read this:


    Ralph Nader: Society Is In Decay – When The Worst Is First And The Best Is Last – OpEd

    Plutocrats like to control the range of permissible public dialogue. Plutocrats also like to shape what society values. If you want to see where a country’s priorities lie, look at how it allocates its money. While teachers and nurses earn comparatively little for performing critical jobs, corporate bosses including those who pollute our planet and bankrupt defenseless families, make millions more. Wells Fargo executives are cases in point. The vastly overpaid CEO of General Electric left his teetering company in shambles. In 2019, Boeing’s CEO got a bonus (despite the Lion Air Flight 610 737 Max 8 crash in 2018). Just days before a second deadly 737 Max 8 crash in Ethiopia.
    This disparity is on full display in my profession. Public interest lawyers and public defenders, who fight daily for a more just and lawful society, are paid modest salaries. On the other hand, the most well compensated lawyers are corporate lawyers who regularly aid and abet corporate crime, fraud, and abuse. Many corporate lawyers line their pockets by shielding the powerful violators from accountability under the rule of law.
    Physicians who minister to the needy poor and go to the risky regions, where Ebola or other deadly infectious diseases are prevalent, are paid far less than cosmetic surgeons catering to human vanities. Does any rational observer believe that the best movies and books are also the most rewarded? Too often the opposite is true. Stunningly gripping documentaries earn less than 1 percent of what is garnered by the violent, pornographic, and crude movies at the top of the ratings each week.
    On my weekly radio show, I interview some of the most dedicated authors who accurately document perils to health and safety. The authors on my program expose pernicious actions and inactions that jeopardize people’s daily lives. These guests offer brilliant, practical solutions for our widespread woes (see ralphnaderradiohour.com). Their important books, usually go unnoticed by the mass media, barely sell a few thousand copies, while the best-seller lists are dominated by celebrity biographies. Ask yourself, when preventable and foreseeable disasters occur, which books are more useful to society?
    The monetary imbalance is especially jarring when it comes to hawks who beat the drums of war. For example, people who push for our government to start illegal wars (eg. John Bolton pushing for the war in Iraq) are rewarded with top appointments. Former government officials also get very rich when they take jobs in the defense industry. Do you remember anyone who opposed the catastrophic Iraq War getting such lucrative rewards?
    The unknown and unrecognized people who harvest our food are on the lowest rung of the income ladder despite the critical role they play in our lives. Near the top of the income ladder are people who gamble on the prices of food via the commodities market and those who drain the nutrients out of natural foods and sell the junk food that remains, with a dose of harmful additives. Agribusiness tycoons profit from this plunder.

    Those getting away with major billing fraud grow rich. While those people trying to get our government to do something about $350 billion dollars in health care billing fraud this year – like Harvard Professor Malcolm K. Sparrow – live on a college professor’s salary.
    Hospital executives, who each make millions of dollars a year, preside over an industry where about 5,000 patients die every week from preventable problems in U.S. hospitals, according to physicians at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. The watchdogs who call out this deadly hazard live on a fraction of that amount as they try to save lives.
    Even in sports, where people think the best athletes make the most money, the reverse is more often true. Just ask a red-faced Brian Cashman, the Yankees GM, who, over twenty years, has spent massive sums on athletes who failed miserably to produce compared to far lesser-paid baseball players. Look at today’s top ranked Yankees – whose fifteen “stars” are injured, while their replacements are playing spectacularly for much smaller compensation than their high priced teammates.
    A major reason why our society’s best are so often last while our worst are first is the media’s infatuation with publicizing the worst and ignoring the best. Warmongers get press. The worst politicians are most frequently on the Sunday morning TV shows – not the good politicians or civic leaders with proven records bettering our society.
    Ever see Congressman Pascrell (Dem. N.J.) on the Sunday morning news shows? Probably not. He’s a leader who is trying to reform Congress so that it is open, honest, capable and represents you the people. Surely you have heard of Senator Lindsey Graham (Rep. S.C.) who is making ugly excuses for Donald Trump, always pushing for war and bloated military budgets, often hating Muslims and Arabs and championing the lawless American Empire. He is always in the news, having his say.
    Take the 162 people who participated in our Superbowl of Civic Action at Constitution Hall in Washington D.C. in May and September 2016. These people have and are changing America. They are working to make food, cars, drugs, air, water, medical devices, and drinking water safer. Abuses by corporations against consumers, workers and small taxpayers would be worse without them. Our knowledge of solutions and ways to treat people fairly and abolish poverty and advance public services is greater because of their courageous hard work. (see breakingthroughpower.org).
    The eight days of this Civic Superbowl got far less coverage than did Tiger Woods losing another tournament that year or the dismissive nicknames given by the foul-mouth Trump to his mostly wealthy Republican opponents on just one debate stage.
    All societies need play, entertainment, and frivolity. But a media obsessed with giving 100 times the TV and radio time, using our public airwaves for free, to those activities than to serious matters crucial to the most basic functioning of our society is assuring that the worst is first and the best is last. Just look at your weekly TV Guide.
    If the whole rotted-out edifice comes crashing down, there won’t be enough coerced taxpayer dollars anymore to save the Plutocrats, with their limitless greed and power. Maybe then the best can have a chance to be first.
     
    proIsrael-nonIsraeli

    proIsrael-nonIsraeli

    Legendary Member
    He wants to kill the Killer Max just like he killed the Killer Corvair "unsafe at any speed" You have a problem with that?...

    If you don't have a mirror to look at yourself read this:


    Ralph Nader: Society Is In Decay – When The Worst Is First And The Best Is Last – OpEd

    Plutocrats like to control the range of permissible public dialogue. Plutocrats also like to shape what society values. If you want to see where a country’s priorities lie, look at how it allocates its money. While teachers and nurses earn comparatively little for performing critical jobs, corporate bosses including those who pollute our planet and bankrupt defenseless families, make millions more. Wells Fargo executives are cases in point. The vastly overpaid CEO of General Electric left his teetering company in shambles. In 2019, Boeing’s CEO got a bonus (despite the Lion Air Flight 610 737 Max 8 crash in 2018). Just days before a second deadly 737 Max 8 crash in Ethiopia.
    This disparity is on full display in my profession. Public interest lawyers and public defenders, who fight daily for a more just and lawful society, are paid modest salaries. On the other hand, the most well compensated lawyers are corporate lawyers who regularly aid and abet corporate crime, fraud, and abuse. Many corporate lawyers line their pockets by shielding the powerful violators from accountability under the rule of law.
    Physicians who minister to the needy poor and go to the risky regions, where Ebola or other deadly infectious diseases are prevalent, are paid far less than cosmetic surgeons catering to human vanities. Does any rational observer believe that the best movies and books are also the most rewarded? Too often the opposite is true. Stunningly gripping documentaries earn less than 1 percent of what is garnered by the violent, pornographic, and crude movies at the top of the ratings each week.
    On my weekly radio show, I interview some of the most dedicated authors who accurately document perils to health and safety. The authors on my program expose pernicious actions and inactions that jeopardize people’s daily lives. These guests offer brilliant, practical solutions for our widespread woes (see ralphnaderradiohour.com). Their important books, usually go unnoticed by the mass media, barely sell a few thousand copies, while the best-seller lists are dominated by celebrity biographies. Ask yourself, when preventable and foreseeable disasters occur, which books are more useful to society?
    The monetary imbalance is especially jarring when it comes to hawks who beat the drums of war. For example, people who push for our government to start illegal wars (eg. John Bolton pushing for the war in Iraq) are rewarded with top appointments. Former government officials also get very rich when they take jobs in the defense industry. Do you remember anyone who opposed the catastrophic Iraq War getting such lucrative rewards?
    The unknown and unrecognized people who harvest our food are on the lowest rung of the income ladder despite the critical role they play in our lives. Near the top of the income ladder are people who gamble on the prices of food via the commodities market and those who drain the nutrients out of natural foods and sell the junk food that remains, with a dose of harmful additives. Agribusiness tycoons profit from this plunder.

    Those getting away with major billing fraud grow rich. While those people trying to get our government to do something about $350 billion dollars in health care billing fraud this year – like Harvard Professor Malcolm K. Sparrow – live on a college professor’s salary.
    Hospital executives, who each make millions of dollars a year, preside over an industry where about 5,000 patients die every week from preventable problems in U.S. hospitals, according to physicians at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. The watchdogs who call out this deadly hazard live on a fraction of that amount as they try to save lives.
    Even in sports, where people think the best athletes make the most money, the reverse is more often true. Just ask a red-faced Brian Cashman, the Yankees GM, who, over twenty years, has spent massive sums on athletes who failed miserably to produce compared to far lesser-paid baseball players. Look at today’s top ranked Yankees – whose fifteen “stars” are injured, while their replacements are playing spectacularly for much smaller compensation than their high priced teammates.
    A major reason why our society’s best are so often last while our worst are first is the media’s infatuation with publicizing the worst and ignoring the best. Warmongers get press. The worst politicians are most frequently on the Sunday morning TV shows – not the good politicians or civic leaders with proven records bettering our society.
    Ever see Congressman Pascrell (Dem. N.J.) on the Sunday morning news shows? Probably not. He’s a leader who is trying to reform Congress so that it is open, honest, capable and represents you the people. Surely you have heard of Senator Lindsey Graham (Rep. S.C.) who is making ugly excuses for Donald Trump, always pushing for war and bloated military budgets, often hating Muslims and Arabs and championing the lawless American Empire. He is always in the news, having his say.
    Take the 162 people who participated in our Superbowl of Civic Action at Constitution Hall in Washington D.C. in May and September 2016. These people have and are changing America. They are working to make food, cars, drugs, air, water, medical devices, and drinking water safer. Abuses by corporations against consumers, workers and small taxpayers would be worse without them. Our knowledge of solutions and ways to treat people fairly and abolish poverty and advance public services is greater because of their courageous hard work. (see breakingthroughpower.org).
    The eight days of this Civic Superbowl got far less coverage than did Tiger Woods losing another tournament that year or the dismissive nicknames given by the foul-mouth Trump to his mostly wealthy Republican opponents on just one debate stage.
    All societies need play, entertainment, and frivolity. But a media obsessed with giving 100 times the TV and radio time, using our public airwaves for free, to those activities than to serious matters crucial to the most basic functioning of our society is assuring that the worst is first and the best is last. Just look at your weekly TV Guide.
    If the whole rotted-out edifice comes crashing down, there won’t be enough coerced taxpayer dollars anymore to save the Plutocrats, with their limitless greed and power. Maybe then the best can have a chance to be first.

    "unsafe at any speed" - Corvair problems had to do with structural/physical deficiencies, not with software shortcomings.

    737 (not the MAX version) has proven itself as air-worthy aircraft long time ago. Nader's suggestion just does not make sense.
     
    vegojimbo

    vegojimbo

    Legendary Member
    "unsafe at any speed" - Corvair problems had to do with structural/physical deficiencies, not with software shortcomings.

    737 (not the MAX version) has proven itself as air-worthy aircraft long time ago. Nader's suggestion just does not make sense.
    Looks like you have no clue about the issue you're discussing. the 737 Max has a structural/physical deficiency just like the Corvair had. Boeing tried to go the cheap fast route and fix it with a software which led to 2 planes crashing and 346 people dead.

    The Max plane is a death trap which should never have been allowed to fly. What's really worrying though is that despite all what's transpired and what the regulators now know about the plane's structural problems, the Max might be allowed to fly again once a new software is written. They will still allow a hardware fault to be treated with software, putting more lives at stake, all in the interest of money and profits. Utterly disgusting.
     
    V

    Viral

    Member
    737 (not the MAX version) has proven itself as air-worthy aircraft long time ago. Nader's suggestion just does not make sense.
    Since day one Nader suggestion the MAX should never fly again. NOT the previous versions of the 737.
    You didn't bother reading the first paragraph before posting. It is true what @vegojimbo suggested; you keep on posting and digging yourself deeper in your own hole.
     
    V

    Viral

    Member
    How Boeing’s Bean-Counters Courted the 737 MAX Disaster

    Boeing wanted to wait three years to fix safety alert on 737 Max
     
    V

    Viral

    Member

    Boeing’s Disaster Could Turn China Into Aviation Superpower

    For decades Boeing and Airbus have operated the world’s largest duopoly, dominating commercial aviation. The Chinese will end that.

    12761

    Boeing’s mishandling of the MAX-8 crisis could well end up giving the Chinese a chance to do something that no other nation has successfully achieved: break the global duopoly in commercial airplanes of Boeing and Airbus.

    Boeing is desperately trying to limit the damage to its reputation caused by two catastrophic MAX-8 crashes in five months. As it turns out, the greatest long-term harm to the company’s business is likely to be in China.

    The Chinese were the first to ground the MAX-8 after the crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 in March and soon afterward the Chinese placed a massive $35 billion order for 300 jets from Airbus.

    For more than a decade Boeing and Airbus have been competing to meet China’s seemingly insatiable appetite for commercial airplanes. It is estimated that air travel in China is growing so fast that in the next 20 years the nation’s airlines will need at least 7,400 new airplanes.

    Long before the grounding of the MAX-8, Airbus was clearly ahead of Boeing in China. Nearly a quarter of Airbus sales are in China, compared to 14 percent for Boeing.

    Boeing and Airbus have built the most powerful duopoly the world has ever seen. Between them the two companies have virtually locked up the market for commercial jets of every size.

    Any country or company taking them on faces a daunting price of entry. To develop a modern jet from scratch can cost up to $25 billion, even for Airbus or Boeing with generations of expertise to build on.



    “Those who claim to understand Chinese strategic thinking seem to agree on one thing: they always play the long game. So unlike Trump.”
    A newcomer has to learn how to design and build the most complex machine in public use to the highest standards of safety. It involves an amalgam of some of the most advanced technologies in the world.

    But that is not enough. A new jet also has to be supported by a global chain to service and maintain the fleet of jets in a timely way to exacting standards set by the airlines.

    Attempts by other countries to do this have not turned out well.

    The Russians are selling the Sukhoi Superjet, a small single-aisle design that suffered a severe blow in 2012 when it was being demonstrated in Indonesia to prospective buyers and crashed, killing 37 aviation industry executives. The few airlines now using it have complained about its unreliability.

    The Japanese are flight-testing the Mitsubishi Regional Jet, a project that has been delayed five times since being launched in 2013. This entirely conventional design should have been relatively easy to execute but has been dogged by technical glitches that reveal that the Japanese are still on a steep learning curve in aviation.
    Many analysts doubted that the Chinese could fare better. They had nothing like the scientific experience of the Russians, who were once world leaders in advanced aerodynamics. If the Russians could screw up so spectacularly surely the Chinese would truly flunk the same test.

    But from the beginning the Chinese were cautious in their ambitions; the temptations of hubris—of making too big a leap—were avoided. How they finally made the decision reveals a lot about their philosophy of how to break into a field where their knowledge was thin and experience non-existent.

    Those who claim to understand Chinese strategic thinking seem to agree on one thing: they always play the long game. So unlike Donald Trump.

    To begin with, they targeted the most profitable market, for the basic airline workhorse, single-aisle jets carrying between 160 and 200 passengers on domestic routes. China alone will need around 9,000 new airplanes in the next 20 years and most of them will be single-aisle.

    This meant that there were two Western designs for them to learn from, the Boeing 737 and the Airbus A320. The 737 was the most venerable, originating in the 1960s and, as the MAX-8 crisis has shown, its age is evident. The A320 was designed in the 1980s and was the first commercial jet to use fly-by-wire flight controls and a far higher degree of cockpit automation.

    On the face of it the Chinese were choosing between one design that remained in many respects 60 years old and one that was 30 years old.

    They chose to make a clone of the A320 that they named the C919 (C for Comac, the government-financed company tasked with the mission.)

    When the program was launched in 2011 many of the technologies that were novel when Airbus created the A320 were by then commonplace.

    And in one key respect the A320 was outdated: It was built mainly of metal while both Airbus and Boeing had since adopted non-metal composites for large parts of the airframe of their latest jets because composites are as strong as metal but lighter in weight and more easily molded into more efficient aerodynamic surfaces.

    The Chinese stuck with metal and in opting for the clone Comac produced an airplane that was outwardly virtually indistinguishable from the A320.

    That was the easy bit. Most jets that sit at an airport gate look the same but under their skin it’s a different story. Each planemaker’s proprietorial knowledge lies deep in thousands of details, much of it in technology and intellectual property controlled by western companies.

    To proceed Comac had to set up partnerships with many of those companies, including one of the largest, UTC Aerospace Systems, part of America’s United Technologies, Rockwell Collins, Honeywell and the French technology colossus, Thales. The engines also come from the Franco-American alliance of Safran and General Electric.

    This dependency has now been overshadowed by Trump’s trade war with China. Last October Vice President Mike Pence warned: “We will continue to stand strong until Beijing stops the predatory practice of forced technology transfer.”

    Just how “forced technology transfer” is defined was unclear. Most aerospace projects involve international partnerships. Some of the technology used in building an airliner also crosses over into military applications but none of it would qualify as a state secret and certainly none of that required for the C919 is classified.

    Airbus has, however, accelerated China’s learning curve in producing commercial jets by establishing an assembly plant for the A320 in China, now 10 years old.

    This plant does not build a jet from the ground up. It follows a model that Airbus uses in Europe. Major sections of the airplane are built in plants dispersed throughout Europe and then shipped to final assembly lines in France and Germany.

    The same major sections—fuselage, wings, engines, landing gear—are flown to China to be mated on the final production line there. The internal cabin fittings are also carried out as custom-ordered by an airline.

    This has enabled the Chinese to have hands-on experience of some of the most exacting stages of building an airliner, like joining the wings to the fuselage, channeling the complex wiring (a detail that the Japanese mishandled on their regional jet) and attaching the engines and fuel systems.
    Boeing was slow to appreciate how much Airbus’s success in China was due to its willingness to let the Chinese learn at first hand all the secrets of a production process that can produce in Europe more than 50 airplanes a month—a rate that China will not reach for years to come. Last December Boeing finally opened a similar assembly plant in China for the 737 MAX series.
    And the 737 MAX series will fly again. Thousands more will probably be sold. But the lethal mistakes made in giving the design yet another upgrade have exposed the limitations imposed by the age of its airframe.

    China will be able to exploit this opportunity to establish the C919 as an Asian-built airplane that will be supported by the world’s largest domestic airline market. The conservatism of its design will be seen as a virtue if it proves to be competitive and reliable.

    As Airbus have done with the A320, Comac will be able to keep the C919 competitive with new generations of engines. Most of the improvements in an airliner’s efficiency—lower emissions, less gas guzzling, greatly reduced sound—come from rapidly advancing jet engine technology. Along with some relatively easy aerodynamic tweaking the C919 should be around for decades to come.

    And the Chinese designers have already moved on. They are developing a larger widebody jet to compete with the Boeing 787 and Airbus A350 to be ready by 2025, this time partnering with the Russians. There will no doubt be setbacks on the way, but the Boeing-Airbus duopoly will for sure eventually lose its dominance of the skies.
     
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