Profits 1st, Safety 2nd?

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Message 1999233 - Posted: 22 Jun 2019, 22:57:09 UTC
Last modified: 22 Jun 2019, 22:57:24 UTC

Continuing to unravel the Boeing 737 Max disaster:


New lawsuit claims Boeing 737 Max suffered from faulty design

A new lawsuit says Boeing's design of the 737 Max was faulty and the company was able to rush the plane into production because it faced little oversight from regulators.

The lawsuit says the plane could crash if a single part malfunctioned, that Boeing concealed problems and refused to ground the plane on its own.

Lawyers say Boeing did the same thing after crashes of earlier 737s in the 1990s...



Sullenberger's experience in a 737 MAX simulator made him see how pilots ran out of time

... told a congressional panel Wednesday that he can see how crews would have struggled during the recent Boeing 737 MAX crashes after he spent time in a simulator running recreations of the doomed flights...

... "I recently experienced all these warnings in a 737 MAX flight simulator during recreations of the accident flights. Even knowing what was going to happen, I could see how crews could have run out of time before they could have solved the problems. Prior to these accidents, I think it is unlikely that any US airline pilots were confronted with this scenario in simulator training," Sullenberger said...

... "We must make sure that everyone who occupies a pilot seat is fully armed with the information, knowledge, training, skill and judgment to be able to be the absolute master of the aircraft and all its component systems and of the situations simultaneously and continuously throughout the flight," he said.
Pilots need physical, firsthand experience to be prepared for emergencies, Sullenberger said.
"Reading about it on an iPad is not even close to sufficient," he said...



Capt. "Sully" Sullenberger blasts Boeing and FAA for "conflicts of interest" on Boeing 737 Max

... blasted Boeing and the Federal Aviation Administration for their roles in the two recent plane crashes involving the Boeing 737 Max 8. In a blistering op-ed published Wednesday on MarketWatch, Sullenberger said "there is too cozy a relationship between the industry and the regulators" for proper oversight to be ensured.

"Boeing and the FAA have been found wanting in this ugly saga that began years ago but has come home to roost with two terrible fatal crashes, with no survivors, in less than five months, on a new airplane type, the Boeing 737 Max 8, something that is unprecedented in modern aviation history," Sullenberger wrote...

... "Let me be clear, without effective leadership and support from political leaders in the administration, the FAA does not have sufficient independence to be able to do its job, which is to keep air travelers and crews safe," he wrote. "Oversight must mean accountability, or it means nothing."




All greedily deadly stuff.

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Message 1999285 - Posted: 23 Jun 2019, 9:12:49 UTC - in response to Message 1999233.  
Last modified: 23 Jun 2019, 9:13:29 UTC

Continuing to unravel the Boeing 737 Max disaster:

New lawsuit claims Boeing 737 Max suffered from faulty design

A new lawsuit says Boeing's design of the 737 Max was faulty and the company was able to rush the plane into production because it faced little oversight from regulators.
The lawsuit says the plane could crash if a single part malfunctioned, that Boeing concealed problems and refused to ground the plane on its own.
Lawyers say Boeing did the same thing after crashes of earlier 737s in the 1990s...

The more lawsuits the merrier!
We've seen blame switched to software writers & component manufacturers & yes they should be held accountable, BUT only by Boeing.
Boeing are the ones who assemble the aircraft & have it certified for airworthiness not the component manufacturers or software writers.
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Message 1999601 - Posted: 25 Jun 2019, 22:48:27 UTC - in response to Message 1999233.  

Continuing to unravel the Boeing 737 Max disaster:

Note especially the date for this first article...


FAA evaluates a potential design flaw on Boeing’s 737 MAX after Lion Air crash

Updated November 15, 2018

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said ... it’s evaluating whether to require Boeing to fix a possible flaw in its design of a new automated flight control system introduced for the 737 MAX jet.

It’s also looking into whether the technical data and training provided to pilots transitioning to the new jet model was adequate. Flight control experts believe that lack of information about the new system likely confused the pilots flying the Lion Air jet that crashed Oct. 29 in Indonesia, killing all 189 people on board...

... The accident investigation has already established that false readings from a sensor that measures the plane’s angle of attack (AOA) — the angle between the wing and the oncoming air flow — could have triggered a flight control system new on the MAX that relentlessly pushed the nose of the aircraft downward.

FAA spokesman Greg Martin said “the angle of attack values used by several systems, including the air data, the fight controls, the stall warning, etcetera, the safety analysis for each of these systems are currently being reviewed.”

Flight control experts say the new system kicking in would have changed the feel of the plane’s control yoke from what the pilots had experienced training on simulators, possibly sowing confusion aboard Flight JT610...

... The fact that the plane’s nose could be automatically and repeatedly pushed down due to one false signal shocked Peter Lemme, a former Boeing flight controls engineer, who said it looks like a design flaw. “To contemplate commanding the (horizontal tail to pitch the jet) nose down clearly is a major concern. For it to have been triggered by something as small as a sensor error is staggering,” Lemme said...

... Likewise, Dwight Schaeffer, a former Boeing electronics engineer and senior manager who oversaw development of systems, including the 737’s stall management computer, said the brief description in the FAA’s airworthiness directive “blows me away.” “Usually you never have a single fault that can put you in danger,” said Schaeffer. “I’ve never seen any such system.”...

... A former Boeing vice president who started as an avionics engineer ... said he is also surprised at the suggestion in the FAA wording of “a single point of failure” that could bring down an aircraft...

... the Lion Air crew didn’t have that information and may have been confused by a key handling difference that the system could have caused during the flight...

... What happened next is crucial.

Any pilot’s natural reaction when a plane’s nose begins to tilt down uncommanded is to pull back on the yoke and raise the nose. In normal flight mode, that would work, because pulling back on the yoke triggers breakout switches that stop any automatic tail movement tending to move the nose of the plane down. But with the MCAS activated, said Fehrm, those breakout switches wouldn’t work...

... Fehrm said that the Lion Air pilots would have trained on 737 simulators and would have learned over many years of experience that pulling back on the yoke stops any automatic tail maneuvers pushing the nose down.

“It fits in your feel memory,” said Fehrm of this physical way of learning. But on the Lion Air flight, if MCAS was active because of a faulty sensor, the pilots would have pulled back and found the downward nose movement didn’t stop.

Fehrm is convinced this led to confusion in the cockpit that contributed to the loss of control. There is a standard procedure to shut off any automatic pitch control, but somehow the pilots did [not] recognize that [was] what was happening. “MCAS had the wrong information and they reacted to that.,” he said. “MCAS is to blame.”...




All greedily deadly stuff.

So... Why was there not an immediate grounding of the Boeing 737 MAX immediately after the first fatal disaster?...

With those fatal ingredients so quickly deduced, why no useful action by the FAA to bring Boeing safely to heel?...


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Message 1999604 - Posted: 25 Jun 2019, 23:04:22 UTC - in response to Message 1999601.  
Last modified: 25 Jun 2019, 23:09:38 UTC

Continuing to unravel the Boeing 737 Max disaster:

[...]
All greedily deadly stuff.

So... Why was there not an immediate grounding of the Boeing 737 MAX immediately after the first fatal disaster?...

With those fatal ingredients so quickly deduced, why no useful action by the FAA to bring Boeing safely to heel?...

Is this another related example of FAA impotence and ineffectiveness that is a present danger in our skies?

(Again, note the date... Any meaningful action taken since??...)


Southwest 737 accident kills passenger, raises engine concerns

Updated April 19, 2018

One passenger died and several others were injured when a Boeing 737 operated by Southwest en route from New York to Dallas suffered a serious engine blowout. Shrapnel broke a passenger window and penetrated the fuselage, forcing an emergency landing in Philadelphia. ... a rare and traumatic event in the nation’s typically safe aviation system that raised concerns focused on the aircraft’s engine and the cowl surrounding the engine fan...

... Similar 2016 incident

The shrapnel damage to the plane’s fuselage and photos of the damage suggest this was a dangerous “uncontained engine failure.”

Such incidents occur about three or four times a year worldwide, according to the NTSB. But Sumwalt said it isn’t immediately certain that this was such a failure.

The engine pods, or nacelles, that surround a jet-engine core have strengthened protection rings designed to keep shrapnel from flying out sideways into the wing or fuselage...

... The 2016 engine blowout occurred on a flight from New Orleans to Orlando, Florida, with 99 passengers and five crew on board and forced an emergency landing in Pensacola. The NTSB investigation into that accident concluded that a titanium engine-fan blade had also broken off due to metal fatigue, flinging debris that made a 5-inch by 16-inch hole in the fuselage just above the left wing and causing the passenger cabin to depressurize.

However, in that case, the interior of the passenger cabin was not penetrated.

After that accident, engine-maker CFM International issued a service bulletin to all airlines recommending an ultrasonic inspection of certain fan blades and, if they fail the inspection, the replacement of those parts...

... Eight months later, the FAA still has not finalized that directive.

An FAA safety engineer, who asked for anonymity because he spoke without authorization from the agency, said that seems an unreasonable delay. “In the notice, the FAA proposed inspections within six months,” he said. “How can you wait so long to finalize the rule?”

The engineer added that if maintenance is not mandatory, some airlines will put it off until the next major overhaul. Engines are routinely overhauled every 30,000 flights.

The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), the counterpart to the FAA in Europe, last month did finalize an Airworthiness Directive requiring airlines operating in Europe to perform the inspections recommended by CFM...

... Aside from the recurrence of a broken engine fan blade, the accident also raises the question of how the engine inlet cowl failed and was stripped away entirely in two separate 737 accidents. “That’s not supposed to happen,” said the FAA engineer. “The inlet cowl is not supposed to come apart.”

In February, a fan blade broke off in flight on a much larger jet powered by a Pratt & Whitney engine — a Boeing 777, United Airlines Flight 1175 from San Francisco to Honolulu — and similarly resulted in the complete loss of the inlet cowl. That plane made an emergency landing in Honolulu and no one was hurt.

The engine inlet cowl is part of the airframe and [is] Boeing’s responsibility...



My understanding of jet engine design is that a complete failure of turbine/fan blades is designed for and that there is protective reinforcement around those areas to ensure that no debris can fly outwards so as to avoid destroying the aircraft... Except that is for Boeing?...


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Message 1999611 - Posted: 25 Jun 2019, 23:27:45 UTC - in response to Message 1999604.  
Last modified: 25 Jun 2019, 23:28:14 UTC

Continuing to unravel the Boeing 737 Max disaster:

[...]
All greedily deadly stuff.

So... Why was there not an immediate grounding of the Boeing 737 MAX immediately after the first fatal disaster?...

With those fatal ingredients so quickly deduced, why no useful action by the FAA to bring Boeing safely to heel?...

More detail of the consequences:


Boeing 737 Max Hit Trouble Right Away, Pilot’s Tense Radio Messages Show

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia — The captain of a doomed Ethiopian Airlines jetliner faced an emergency almost immediately after takeoff from Addis Ababa, requesting permission in a panicky voice to return after three minutes as the aircraft accelerated to abnormal speed, a person who reviewed air traffic communications said Thursday.

“Break break, request back to home,” the captain told air traffic controllers as they scrambled to divert two other flights approaching the airport. “Request vector for landing.”

Controllers also observed that the aircraft, a new Boeing 737 Max 8, was oscillating up and down by hundreds of feet — a sign that something was extraordinarily wrong.

All contact between air controllers and the aircraft, Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 to Nairobi, was lost five minutes after it took off on Sunday...

... the controllers had concluded even before the captain’s message that he had an emergency...



Over 400 Pilots Sue Boeing Over 'Unprecedented Cover-Up" of "Known Design Flaws" in 737 Max

... accuses the Chicago-based aviation giant of "an unprecedented cover-up of the known design flaws of the MAX, which predictably resulted in the crashes of two MAX aircraft and subsequent grounding of all MAX aircraft worldwide."...

In May, we reported that Boeing designers also altered a MCAS toggle switch panel that could have prevented both of the deadly crashes.

On the older 737 NG, the right switch was labeled "AUTO PILOT" - and allowed pilots to deactivate the plane's automated stabilizer controls, such as the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS), suspected to be the culprit in both crashes. The left toggle switch on the NG would deactivate the buttons on the yoke which pilots regularly use to control the horizontal stabilizer.

On the 737 MAX, however, the two switches were altered to perform the same function, according to internal documents reviewed by the Times, so that they would disable all electronic stabilizer controls - including the MCAS and the thumb buttons on the yoke used to control the stabilizer...

... "Pilot X, alleges that Boeing "decided not to tell MAX pilots about the MCAS or to require MAX pilots to undergo any MCAS training" so that its customers could deploy pilots on "revenue-generating routes as quickly as possible"...

... The pilots who have joined the lawsuit hope to "deter Boeing and other airplane manufacturers from placing corporate profits ahead of the lives of the pilots, crews, and general public they service."



Here are all the investigations and lawsuits that Boeing and the FAA are facing after the 737 Max crashes killed almost 350 people

... Congressional committees, the Department of Transportation and the Department of Justice are looking at how the US regulatory system allowed Boeing to partly certify its own planes.

Meanwhile, a growing number of families from various countries are taking legal action against the company which built the planes their loved ones died in...




My reading of all this is that the story gets ever worse... Really?! Changing the function of the trim toggle switches between the "737 NG" and "737 MAX" so that the pilots would be left without options, or deadly worse, confused?


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Message 1999818 - Posted: 26 Jun 2019, 21:06:58 UTC

Maybe it wasn't MCAS?
In simulator tests, government pilots discovered that a microprocessor failure could push the nose of the plane toward the ground. It is not known whether the microprocessor played a role in either crash.


When you don't prejudge an investigation then you may come to an actual fault determination.
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Message 1999948 - Posted: 27 Jun 2019, 14:48:25 UTC - in response to Message 1999818.  
Last modified: 27 Jun 2019, 14:51:41 UTC

Maybe it wasn't MCAS?
In simulator tests, government pilots discovered that a microprocessor failure could push the nose of the plane toward the ground. It is not known whether the microprocessor played a role in either crash.


When you don't prejudge an investigation then you may come to an actual fault determination.

Thanks for that link. Interesting...

Note that for whatever control systems controlling the flight of an aircraft, those systems must "fail safe" if they are to suffer failure. That is, any failure must fail to a safe or a benign condition. Not, as has been the case for MCAS, nose diving the plane into unrecoverable death.

Hence, that rather suggests that there is a microprocessor failure that can fail to a non-safe state... MCAS is software run on a flight computer... Is there any other software other than MCAS that commands nose-diving actuation of the tail trim?


There's a further article that gives a slightly different spin:

Boeing 737 Max: New issue could delay aircraft's return

... Reuters, which first reported the new issue, said during an FAA pilot simulation in which the software was activated, it had taken longer than expected to recover the aircraft.

Other sources said the problem was linked to the aircraft's computing power and whether the processor possessed enough capacity to keep up.

Boeing said "we are working closely with the FAA to safely return the Max to service" and that it believed a software fix would address the problem.

But the FAA will be looking into whether it is a hardware issue...




So... Pure conjecture of my personal opinion and total ignorance and all that... Is the existing flight computer now overloaded with extra software bloat and/or extra demands for the new MCAS? Was part of the original problem with MCAS that the software was (dangerously) restricted because the flight computer does not have enough capacity to include sanity/safety checks and voting across multiple redundant sensors?...

All a very big Ouch!

And still... Can the aircraft safely recover from all stall conditions without the intervention of MCAS?... Hence is MCAS somewhat more than merely a 'comfort add-on'?...


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Message 1999950 - Posted: 27 Jun 2019, 15:24:54 UTC

TOTALLY gobsmacking!

Really! Seriously?!! Boeing were wanting to put this out to airliners flying many thousands of people?!!!

Words fail me for this one. Judge for yourselves:


You're not Boeing to believe this, but... Another deadly 737 Max control bug found

Yet another deadly and baffling safety flaw has been uncovered in Boeing's 737 Max line of airplanes.

The US manufacturer on Wednesday confirmed that, during simulator tests on the embattled jetliners, the 737 Max's new control software would lock up a microprocessor resulting in the plane automatically entering a dangerous nosedive.

It's understood the code that knackered the hardware was part of a firmware update to address deadly flaws in MCAS, the 737 Max's anti-stall tech that wound up killing hundreds of people...

... "The safety of our airplanes is Boeing’s highest priority," the jet builder insisted...

... This all comes after CNN cited unnamed sources in reporting that while testing a supposedly fixed version of the MCAS software in a simulator, pilots found that a microprocessor in the anti-stall system would lock up. As a result, the plane would pitch down and, for several seconds, the pilots would struggle to regain control. Presumably the new software was run on actual MCAS hardware within the simulator, triggering the hardware freeze...

... The [two] disasters ... killed a total 346 people...




All in greedy haste and all consequences and people be damned?

All beyond no morals and criminal.

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Message 1999955 - Posted: 27 Jun 2019, 15:46:12 UTC - in response to Message 1999950.  

You writing a thesis for a PhD? Rather than post another lengthy missive, all you had to do was to post:
As a follow on from previous post, this is unbelievable, then provide the link.
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Message 1999958 - Posted: 27 Jun 2019, 16:12:31 UTC - in response to Message 1999955.  
Last modified: 27 Jun 2019, 16:13:55 UTC

... Rather than post another lengthy missive, all you had to do was to post:
As a follow on from previous post, this is unbelievable, then provide the link.

That would be far too dismissive for something so deadly outrageous...

Note that the job of the FAA should be to just act as intelligent thorough auditors to ensure that Boeing have themselves been properly thorough and diligent.

Instead, we appear to have the FAA acting as a goal keeper with two broken legs dodging a barrage of volleys with a very high risk that a deadly dodgy ball gets past...


No way should the FAA be Boeing's first line of testing!!! Ridiculous.

That also strongly suggests that Boeing are not doing thorough design and definitely not doing adequate testing... And on other planes other than their 737 Max?...


All deadly dangerous.

And the consequences...

Discuss?


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Message 1999959 - Posted: 27 Jun 2019, 16:16:31 UTC

Aside:

Is "Profits 1st, Safety 2nd?" now synonymous with the world of Boeing?


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Message 1999960 - Posted: 27 Jun 2019, 16:17:36 UTC - in response to Message 1999948.  

So... Pure conjecture of my personal opinion and total ignorance and all that... Is the existing flight computer now overloaded with extra software bloat and/or extra demands for the new MCAS? Was part of the original problem with MCAS that the software was (dangerously) restricted because the flight computer does not have enough capacity to include sanity/safety checks and voting across multiple redundant sensors?...
Those of us who read both here and in the Number Crunching forum might ask...

Do any of us know, or have a way of finding out, what make and/or model range of microprocessor is used in the onboard flight control system? Crunchers here are well placed to know that:

Microprocessors have recently been found to have security flaws in, particularly, the presumptive lookahead processing pipeline, used to enhance operating performance
Patches have been deployed to restore security
Deploying the patches has made the processors slower

So, even if the original Boeing processors were adequate for the job they were specified for, are they still, now, even adequate for that role - let alone the extra demands now being placed on them?
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Message 1999961 - Posted: 27 Jun 2019, 16:25:13 UTC - in response to Message 1999959.  

That could be a jest. Unfortunately, whether or not it was, it is apt to the point that the thread could just as well be: Boeing 1st, safety 2nd.

For the past quarter of a century at least, if not more, all aspects of logistics be it be Air Sea or Land, has succumbed to profits 1st with safety taking a back seat.
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Message 1999965 - Posted: 27 Jun 2019, 17:18:18 UTC - in response to Message 1999959.  

Aside:

Is "Profits 1st, Safety 2nd?" now synonymous with the world of Boeing?

Nope. Mandated by law in the USA. Called "The fiduciary duty to the shareholder." So not just Boeing, every public company. Washing machines, refrigerators, cladding, automobiles, the list is long. Some of you on the other side of the pond might begin to see a pattern.
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Message 1999966 - Posted: 27 Jun 2019, 17:26:30 UTC - in response to Message 1999965.  

Fiduciary duty=legalised murder as its cheaper to pay fines.
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Message 1999992 - Posted: 27 Jun 2019, 21:45:37 UTC - in response to Message 1999966.  

Fiduciary duty=legalised murder as its cheaper to pay fines.

Now you are getting the concept.
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Message 1999997 - Posted: 27 Jun 2019, 22:45:48 UTC - in response to Message 1999992.  

Yes, they learned it mostly from the automobile companies...

In a rear-end collision, the fuel filler neck could separate and puncture the fuel tank, spraying fuel into the passenger compartment and igniting. In an exposé in Mother Jones in 1977, it was revealed that Ford had known about the defect before the car even went to production, but decided it would be too expensive to fix — the cost to safely upgrade the fuel system would’ve added $11 to the cost of each car. A shield to protect the tank from rupturing would have only cost $1.

To make matters worse, a chilling memo from 1973 was leaked to the media that outlined (by Ford’s bean counters’ estimates) how many deaths to expect per year from the defect and how much it expected to cost the company per lawsuit. The memo ultimately decided that this was cheaper for the company than spending the money to fix the problem. By 1978, the public outcry was so strong that Ford reluctantly recalled 1.5 million Pintos (and the identical Mercury Bobcat), and made the life-saving modifications to the fuel system.


46 years gone and nothing changes.
“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.”
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Message 1999999 - Posted: 27 Jun 2019, 23:04:38 UTC - in response to Message 1999997.  

46 years gone and nothing changes.
Yes, Boeing made a Ford Pinto as I said a long time ago in this thread, but few understood.
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Message 2000250 - Posted: 29 Jun 2019, 9:09:44 UTC
Last modified: 29 Jun 2019, 9:11:02 UTC

Report at Bloomberg that Boeing, in a cost cutting move, outsourced the 737MAX software to temporary $9/hr software engineers.

Bloomberg
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Message 2000253 - Posted: 29 Jun 2019, 9:58:50 UTC - in response to Message 2000250.  

The Max software -- plagued by issues that could keep the planes grounded months longer after U.S. regulators this week revealed a new flaw -- was developed at a time Boeing was laying off experienced engineers and pressing suppliers to cut costs.
Increasingly, the iconic American planemaker and its subcontractors have relied on temporary workers making as little as $9 an hour to develop and test software, often from countries lacking a deep background in aerospace .
Boeing still trying to absolve themselves of blame. Unfortunately, the one thing that will not change in this instance is that they are the aircraft assemblers who forward a completed aircraft for certification, while partly self-certificating it themselves.
Watching Boeing squirm is more hilarious than Gerald Ratner. :-)
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