CEO: Boeing made mistake in handling warning-system problem

Evarado Alatorre
Junio 16, 2019

Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg told reporters in Paris before the industry-wide air show that Boeing's communication with regulators, customers and the public "was not consistent".

The head of Boeing Co said on Sunday the US planemaker had made a mistake in implementing a cockpit warning system on the 737 MAX and predicted it would take time to rebuild the confidence of customers in the wake of two fatal crashes.

The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration has faulted Boeing for not telling regulators for more than year that a safety indicator in the cockpit of the top-selling plane didn't work as intended.

Pilots are angry the company didn't tell them about the new software that's been implicated in the crashes in Indonesia and Ethiopia that killed 346 people.

FILE - In this Monday, April 29, 2019 file photo, Boeing Chief Executive Dennis Muilenburg speaks during a news conference after the company's annual shareholders meeting at the Field Museum in Chicago.

Muilenburg called the crashes of the Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines jets a "defining moment" for Boeing, but said he thinks the result will be a "better and stronger company".

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Muilenburg promised "transparency" as Boeing tries to get the grounded model back in flight.

Norwegian Air expects Boeing's 737 MAX aircraft to remain grounded until at least the end of August, missing the European summer season, CEO Bjoern Kjos said on Friday.

The fatal crashes and the ongoing grounding of its fastest-selling plane have cast a shadow over Boeing's appearance at the Paris Air Show, which runs June 17-23.

In the United States, Boeing has faced scrutiny from members of Congress and the FAA over how it reported the problem involving a cockpit warning light.

In his comments, Muilenburg referred to a safety feature connected to the sensors that feed into the MCAS software. Boeing designed a warning light to alert pilots when the two "angle of attack" sensors disagreed, which could mean MCAS would be triggered incorrectly. Now Boeing is working on a software update that will enable pilots to more easily control their aircraft.

He also announced that Boeing is raising its long-term forecast for global plane demand, notably amid sustained growth in Asia.

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