Congress held hearings Wednesday on the FAA's oversight and approval process of the Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft. The Max 8 was the type of plane involved in the deadly crashes of Lion Air Flight 610 in October and Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 earlier this month. Members specifically pressed for answers about the FAA's approval of Boeing's MCAS anti-stall safety system. Boeing and the FAA decided pilots did not need to be informed about the change to the flight control system when the 737 Max 8 rolled out, helping airlines avoid the cost of more extensive retraining of pilots. The Transportation Department is now investigating how the FAA certified the Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft and approved the MCAS system. MCAS has come under scrutiny as a possible factor in the two fatal crashes.The Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development and Related Agencies questioned Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao beginning at 10:00 a.m. EDT.The Senate Commerce … [Read more...] about Congress seeks answers on Boeing 737 Max 8 approval
Boeing 737 next generation
The crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 on Sunday — five months after the Lion Air crash of the same type of plane in Indonesia — has raised many questions about the Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft. There are currently two types of Boeing 737 planes in use around the world that sound similar but are in fact very different aircraft with distinctive technology. The Boeing 737 Max 8, the model involved in the two deadly crashes, is the newer successor to the Boeing 737 Next Generation line of aircraft. Boeing 737 Next Generation (737NG) is the overarching name given to a fleet of aircraft that began production in 1991. It includes the Boeing 737-600, Boeing 737-700, Boeing 737-800 and Boeing 737-900 — variations with different seating capacity. The 737NG featured improved fuel capacity, a 25 percent larger wing capacity, and an ability to fly 900 more nautical miles than earlier 737 models. Southwest Airlines was the world's first airline to take delivery in 1997, and … [Read more...] about How is the Boeing 737 Max 8 different from other Boeing 737 airplanes?
By Charles E. KrausKraus lives in Seattle.On Monday, the day after the Boeing 737 Max 8 crash – the model’s second crash in less than five months -- I’m onboard a Southwest 737 that just took off from Seattle.Depending upon which newscast you catch, Southwest owns between 20 and 30 potentially dangerous craft. Fortunately, though, my trip is not on a Max 8. But it might have been. You book a flight, make plans, arrive at the airport and board your flight. I had about an hour to wait before reporting to my gate, and used it to peruse the Southwest clientele seated, standing or in the case of the kids, running around the company’s half a dozen gates. I heard no discussion about the recent accident. Not one word. It is possible that many of those gathered were unaware of Monday’s tragedy? The rest chose not to talk about it -- why stir up anxiety? That’s my theory.I looked around. Who would be willing to board a Max 8, a plane with a recent reputation … [Read more...] about Opinion: Would you fly in a Boeing 737 Max 8?
American Airlines Group pilots want the carrier to offer more training on Boeing’s 737 MAX to better understand new anti-stall software, after a preliminary report on an Indonesia plane crash suggested that aircraft malfunctions left aviators overwhelmed. The Allied Pilots Association (APA) made the request after what the union said was an unprecedented meeting with Boeing officials this week. The manufacturer also met with Southwest Airlines’ pilots union. Both carriers fly the MAX, Boeing’s latest iteration of the popular 737 jetliner. The new model replaced an older version called the next generation, or NG. The APA is asking American “to consider additional days of training for these significant differences in the NG and the MAX,” said Dennis Tajer, a spokesman for the union and a 737 captain at the airline. Boeing is working to bolster confidence in its systems after pilots from American and Southwest said they weren’t informed about a … [Read more...] about American Air pilots seek more training on Boeing 737 MAX after Lion Air crash
Southwest Airlines Co.'s dedication to an all-737 fleet entered a new phase Sunday as the carrier closed out deliveries of one generation of the jet and turned attention to the next. From now on, the airline will receive only 737 Max planes, the latest iteration of the narrow-body aircraft that is Boeing Co.'s largest source of profit. Southwest operates the biggest 737 fleet.Southwest first ordered 63 of Boeing's 737-700s in 1993, serving as the launch customer for the so-called Next Generation model and helping Boeing "move forward with the development of the -700 and -800 programs," Chief Executive Officer Gary Kelly said. It received the first of the aircraft in December 1997, and now operates 512 of the -700s and 202 -800s."We'll continue to fly these airplanes for many, many years to come," Kelly told employees in a regularly recorded message Monday. But in some ways, he said, the transition marks "the end of an era for this workhorse airplane.''Southwest is already flying about … [Read more...] about Southwest Airlines marks end of an era with delivery of last Boeing 737 Next Gen