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Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Dec 31, 2020 10:58 am

Welcome to 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021. Please continue to add your comments below

Link to last thread

viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1448399

Link to 737MAX Grounding News and Reference Thread

viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1437865

Link to 737MAX Return to Service Thread

viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1455901

Just a reminder to keep your posts on topic, personal attacks and flamebait are left out of the discussion, if you are quoting from news sources to add links and your own comments
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Dec 31, 2020 11:27 am

Since MAX is on the way back.. how about more optimistic title? E.g. MAX return to service?
 
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Dec 31, 2020 11:42 am

kalvado wrote:
Since MAX is on the way back.. how about more optimistic title? E.g. MAX return to service?


There is a separate MAX return to service thread, see opening post. While I understand what you are saying the majority of 737MAX fleet is still grounded so this thread and the RTS thread can operate side by side for the time being. Additionally I would prefer any discussion outside of RTS to stay in this thread. In the meantime I will speak to the other moderators and we will decide whether this thread remains a grounding thread or something else
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Wed Jan 06, 2021 9:13 pm

Looking at the RTS thread, we don't see any significant signs of public rejection of the MAX.

To me this is no surprise.

In a sad way COVID is helping, in that people have other things on their mind rather than the MAX.

By the time traffic ramps up there will be a lot of MAXes in a lot of fleets and in general people will get on them without batting an eye.

We survived COVID, now get me the cheapest flight to Miami or Ibiza please will be the order of the day.
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 6:31 am

Yes it's scary.
Many will have no choice.
With COVID many are in dire need to work and will have to take risk to fly on this patched up solution or lose the job. I agree that COVID or the car poses a bigger risk, but tell this to someone flying a Max , sorry a -8 , over the ocean, that does not make for a pleasant trip. Scary.
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 2:09 pm

Aquila3 wrote:

With COVID many are in dire need to work and will have to take risk to fly on this patched up solution or lose the job. I agree that COVID or the car poses a bigger risk, but tell this to someone flying a Max , sorry a -8 , over the ocean, that does not make for a pleasant trip. Scary.



So, you seem to be saying that flying a MAX over the ocean is scarier than flying one over land. Why would that be?

Besides, even when in full RTS, there wouldn't be a large percentage of MAXs flying over the ocean.
 
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 3:18 pm

bob75013 wrote:
So, you seem to be saying that flying a MAX over the ocean is scarier than flying one over land. Why would that be?

Because there are no airports to divert to in the ocean? While there are hundreds of airports in Europe or the United States?
 
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 3:28 pm

Aquila3 wrote:
Yes it's scary.
Many will have no choice.
With COVID many are in dire need to work and will have to take risk to fly on this patched up solution or lose the job. I agree that COVID or the car poses a bigger risk, but tell this to someone flying a Max , sorry a -8 , over the ocean, that does not make for a pleasant trip. Scary.


What specifically are you worried about?
 
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 3:31 pm

morrisond wrote:
Aquila3 wrote:
Yes it's scary.
Many will have no choice.
With COVID many are in dire need to work and will have to take risk to fly on this patched up solution or lose the job. I agree that COVID or the car poses a bigger risk, but tell this to someone flying a Max , sorry a -8 , over the ocean, that does not make for a pleasant trip. Scary.


What specifically are you worried about?

The scariest part is the drive to the airport.
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 3:31 pm

Yes, we have to accept risks, and I said already that the travel to airport (I said car in that sense, sorry if I did not made it clear) and COVID pose a bigger risk.
But in this forum we speak mainly of flying. And looks like the risk of flying a Max, for some metrics that you can easily figure out, is still orders of magnitude higher that any other modern airliner.
BTW, why do mention "full FBW" twice? Are you suggesting that a decently executed one would have saved the lives on the last two 737 crashes?
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 3:40 pm

Aquila3 wrote:
Yes, we have to accept risks, and I said already that the travel to airport (I said car in that sense, sorry if I did not made it clear) and COVID pose a bigger risk.
But in this forum we speak mainly of flying. And looks like the risk of flying a Max, for some metrics that you can easily figure out, is still orders of magnitude higher that any other modern airliner.
BTW, why do mention "full FBW" twice? Are you suggesting that a decently executed one would have saved the lives on the last two 737 crashes?


Assuming that the MAX still had MCAS 1.0 and Airlines continued to do no training on the system, and pilots decided not to learn anything about it themselves then yes you would have the same level of risk.

You can't take the small sample of the MCAS 1.0 MAX and extrapolate it into the future. MCAS should be fixed, airlines should be training their pilots on it and you would hope that all 737 pilots were finally aware of MCAS and will know what to do if faced with a malfunction. Well you can do whatever you want - however the MAX is now probably the most scrutinized aircraft out there right now built on probably the SA with arguably the best fatality record - the 737 NG.

Where is the quote about "full FBW"?
 
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 3:51 pm

Aquila3 wrote:
But in this forum we speak mainly of flying. And looks like the risk of flying a Max, for some metrics that you can easily figure out, is still orders of magnitude higher that any other modern airliner.

The problem with metrics that are easy to figure out is they are easily distorted by outliers. "On average Jeff Bezos and I are worth $90B" is one such example.

Aquila3 wrote:
BTW, why do mention "full FBW" twice? Are you suggesting that a decently executed one would have saved the lives on the last two 737 crashes?

Right, the problem is the "decently executed" part. The problem with the MAX is not lack of FBW, the problem is the lack of decent execution on MCAS. I'm quite confident that after all the scrutiny MCAS and the rest of MAX has gotten we will return to the historical accident rate for the 737 family. Others are free to feel differently, even though we know the software was fixed and the plane was tested extensively with and without MCAS enabled.
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 4:21 pm

morrisond wrote:
You can't take the small sample of the MCAS 1.0 MAX and extrapolate it into the future.

Well, even considering hundreds of lives a small sample (I don't) , I believe that this was exactly one of the reasons why the Max was grounded. Someone in the authorities that control civil aviation had extrapolated that when the Max would be in full service with numbers alike the NG the event would occur every couple of weeks. Sorry if the numbers are not precise, but that i believe was the ballpark.So someone considered the two consecutive crashes not "outliers" , but representative of a definite trend. I think they did right, and more so at the second crash. Of course you are free to disagree with them (as I seem to remember you did) but that's it. It was grounded from almost all the authorities of the planet, and at least also from the US one.
morrisond wrote:
MCAS should be fixed, airlines should be training their pilots on it and you would hope that all 737 pilots were finally aware of MCAS and will know what to do if faced with a malfunction. Well you can do whatever you want - however the MAX is now probably the most scrutinized aircraft out there right now built on probably the SA with arguably the best fatality record - the 737 NG.

I have problems with the "should" and "would hope" parts of your sentence. And yes, it is arguable the fatality record of the NG. Very good? Yes. Best ? I do not think so. But this is meat for another thread, please.
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 5:02 pm

Aquila3 wrote:
morrisond wrote:
You can't take the small sample of the MCAS 1.0 MAX and extrapolate it into the future.

Well, even considering hundreds of lives a small sample (I don't) , I believe that this was exactly one of the reasons why the Max was grounded. Someone in the authorities that control civil aviation had extrapolated that when the Max would be in full service with numbers alike the NG the event would occur every couple of weeks. Sorry if the numbers are not precise, but that i believe was the ballpark.So someone considered the two consecutive crashes not "outliers" , but representative of a definite trend. I think they did right, and more so at the second crash. Of course you are free to disagree with them (as I seem to remember you did) but that's it. It was grounded from almost all the authorities of the planet, and at least also from the US one.
morrisond wrote:
MCAS should be fixed, airlines should be training their pilots on it and you would hope that all 737 pilots were finally aware of MCAS and will know what to do if faced with a malfunction. Well you can do whatever you want - however the MAX is now probably the most scrutinized aircraft out there right now built on probably the SA with arguably the best fatality record - the 737 NG.

I have problems with the "should" and "would hope" parts of your sentence. And yes, it is arguable the fatality record of the NG. Very good? Yes. Best ? I do not think so. But this is meat for another thread, please.


What does anything you wrote have to do with the MAX and MCAS 2.0? It is not the same aircraft with the same system design that caused the issue.

Unless you think the Worlds regulators have screwed up again and let another flawed system into service or airlines haven't trained their pilots properly or pilots are not aware of the system.

What have they missed?

Here are the fatality rates on various different airplanes - notice the 737 NG is the lowest SA in the space it competes in. E170/E190 is lower but that is a different class of aircraft. http://www.airsafe.com/events/models/rate_mod.htm
 
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 7:53 pm

Aquila3 wrote:
Well, even considering hundreds of lives a small sample (I don't) , I believe that this was exactly one of the reasons why the Max was grounded. Someone in the authorities that control civil aviation had extrapolated that when the Max would be in full service with numbers alike the NG the event would occur every couple of weeks. Sorry if the numbers are not precise, but that i believe was the ballpark.So someone considered the two consecutive crashes not "outliers" , but representative of a definite trend. I think they did right, and more so at the second crash. Of course you are free to disagree with them (as I seem to remember you did) but that's it. It was grounded from almost all the authorities of the planet, and at least also from the US one.

Right, the authorities looked at the events and decided the accident rate was unacceptable and did an extrapolation that said if MCAS is not fixed then we can project an unacceptable accident rate going forward so we need to ground the plane. Now that it is fixed and has been tested to the best of the manufacturers and regulators abilities we can expect a return to the historical trend line. Those two catastrophic crashes will become statistical outliers unless we return to two catastrophic crashes every four months.
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 8:58 pm

Revelation wrote:
Aquila3 wrote:
Well, even considering hundreds of lives a small sample (I don't) , I believe that this was exactly one of the reasons why the Max was grounded. Someone in the authorities that control civil aviation had extrapolated that when the Max would be in full service with numbers alike the NG the event would occur every couple of weeks. Sorry if the numbers are not precise, but that i believe was the ballpark.So someone considered the two consecutive crashes not "outliers" , but representative of a definite trend. I think they did right, and more so at the second crash. Of course you are free to disagree with them (as I seem to remember you did) but that's it. It was grounded from almost all the authorities of the planet, and at least also from the US one.

Right, the authorities looked at the events and decided the accident rate was unacceptable and did an extrapolation that said if MCAS is not fixed then we can project an unacceptable accident rate going forward so we need to ground the plane. Now that it is fixed and has been tested to the best of the manufacturers and regulators abilities we can expect a return to the historical trend line. Those two catastrophic crashes will become statistical outliers unless we return to two catastrophic crashes every four months.


Meanwhile Aquila3 has the choice to select which airlines and airplanes he does fly on. He should also decide whether to trust the Tesla autopilot on his drive to the airport. It has only rear ended a dozen fire trucks.
 
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 9:19 pm

https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/boeing-c ... 25-billion

A pinnacle of transparency and triumph of engineering.
 
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 9:41 pm

Boeing agreed to pay $2.5 billion to resolve federal criminal charge over 737 MAX conspiracy:

https://apple.news/A77bvTuhjQ1GgA_Ur1q-GWA

“The Justice Department said Boeing has admitted that two of its technical pilots deceived federal safety regulators about a software system that was implicated in both crashes. As a result of their deception, the department said, airplane manuals and training documents lacked information about the system.”
 
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 9:44 pm

That is pretty damning! Will this lead to further criminal charges against individuals within Boeing, or are these fines the end of it? Is the case now settled?
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 9:54 pm

2.5 Billion dollars does not seem enough for something as criminal and life changing for so many families as this deception

And surely some people from Boeing need to go to jail for this as well?
 
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 9:57 pm

The article said "criminal monetary penalty of $243.6M, compensation payments to Boeing customers of $1.77B and the establishment of a $500M crash victim beneficiaries fund." So it appears a great part of this has been common knowledge except for the $243.6M criminal penalty. In any case, it is a sad day for BA.
 
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 9:59 pm

So is the 2.5bn a settlement for the DoJ "conspiracy to defraud" or is that a separate action that will also continue?
 
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 10:17 pm

MrBretz wrote:
The article said "criminal monetary penalty of $243.6M, compensation payments to Boeing customers of $1.77B and the establishment of a $500M crash victim beneficiaries fund." So it appears a great part of this has been common knowledge except for the $243.6M criminal penalty. In any case, it is a sad day for BA.


How many people died?

How does 500M come close to compensating for what has happened to all of their families?
 
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 11:08 pm

Interested wrote:
MrBretz wrote:
The article said "criminal monetary penalty of $243.6M, compensation payments to Boeing customers of $1.77B and the establishment of a $500M crash victim beneficiaries fund." So it appears a great part of this has been common knowledge except for the $243.6M criminal penalty. In any case, it is a sad day for BA.


How many people died?

How does 500M come close to compensating for what has happened to all of their families?


I think I read somewhere that each family has received $144,500. But that was just an initial payment. Maybe this rounds it up to $1.4M per death? I dunno...
 
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 11:10 pm

In an SEC filing released Thursday, Boeing said it agreed to the charge "based on the conduct of two former 737 MAX program technical pilots."


So Boeing's going pin the whole bloody thing on just two people, one of whom is chief technical pilot for the aircraft, Mark Forkner. :sarcastic:

Well at $1.25 billion plus their other compensation, those folks certainly were more valuable than the entire BoD and C Suite. :duck:
 
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 11:12 pm

JibberJim wrote:
So is the 2.5bn a settlement for the DoJ "conspiracy to defraud" or is that a separate action that will also continue?


Boeing agreed to pay the DoJ a $243 million criminal penalty to settle the conspiracy charge.

The remainder of the settlement is for the families of those who lost their lives and to compensate 737 MAX customers for not being able to operate the MAX during the grounding.



Be interesting to know if that $1.77 billion to the airlines is all new money or a formal recognition of compensation payments Boeing has already made to customers or a combination of the two.
 
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 11:18 pm

JibberJim wrote:
So is the 2.5bn a settlement for the DoJ "conspiracy to defraud" or is that a separate action that will also continue?

The DoJ link above says:

As Boeing admitted in court documents, Boeing—through two of its 737 MAX Flight Technical Pilots—deceived the FAA AEG about an important aircraft part called the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS) that impacted the flight control system of the Boeing 737 MAX. Because of their deception, a key document published by the FAA AEG lacked information about MCAS, and in turn, airplane manuals and pilot-training materials for U.S.-based airlines lacked information about MCAS.

And:

As part of the DPA, Boeing has agreed, among other things, to continue to cooperate with the Fraud Section in any ongoing or future investigations and prosecutions.

So this is about Forkner and his texts to his colleague showing that they were being deceptive, the stuff from the earlier DoJ text message dump.

And this isn't necessarily the end.

DoJ may or may not have evidence of other criminal acts Boeing committed during MAX development.

IMO DoJ should have held Boeing's feet to the fire and should have prosecuted individuals too rather than letting the employer write a big check to buy their way out of jail.

Also it's very cynical to bury this story under the massive events going on in Washington now.

And it seems the $2.5B figure is cynically including money Boeing already decided to pay in compensation to airlines and victims families, not new money.

I still wonder about the four second guy, and if the DoJ found any evidence around the process that lead to him deciding that MCAS was not in the catastrophic safety category.

Yet the tone of the presser suggests the "DoJ investigation" is over.

More stuff:

In addition, while Boeing’s cooperation ultimately included voluntarily and proactively identifying to the Fraud Section potentially significant documents and Boeing witnesses, and voluntarily organizing voluminous evidence that Boeing was obligated to produce, such cooperation, however, was delayed and only began after the first six months of the Fraud Section’s investigation, during which time Boeing’s response frustrated the Fraud Section’s investigation.

So Boeing initially stonewalled. I wonder if this is what got Muilenburg fired? And in turn if he had bad legal advice telling him to stonewall.

the misconduct was neither pervasive across the organization, nor undertaken by a large number of employees, nor facilitated by senior management

Translation: Boeing has succeeded in making Forkner the fall guy for the MCAS tragedy.

However, agreeing to pay the criminal penalties for fraudulent behavior is going to give the civil cases a big boost. Unfortunately for Boeing they were caught red handed.
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 11:43 pm

Guillaume787 wrote:
Boeing agreed to pay $2.5 billion to resolve federal criminal charge over 737 MAX conspiracy:

https://apple.news/A77bvTuhjQ1GgA_Ur1q-GWA

“The Justice Department said Boeing has admitted that two of its technical pilots deceived federal safety regulators about a software system that was implicated in both crashes. As a result of their deception, the department said, airplane manuals and training documents lacked information about the system.”

Not sure why over 70% of the $2.5bn is even included, when it's compensation by way of conditional credits to airline and lessor customers for delivery delays, groundings, and consequential costs like additional training.

Victim compensation and the fines portion seems miniscule.
 
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 11:43 pm

hilram wrote:
That is pretty damning! Will this lead to further criminal charges against individuals within Boeing, or are these fines the end of it? Is the case now settled?

The DoJ presser seems to make it pretty clear that Boeing is accepting responsibility for Forkner and Gustavsson.

MrBretz wrote:
The article said "criminal monetary penalty of $243.6M, compensation payments to Boeing customers of $1.77B and the establishment of a $500M crash victim beneficiaries fund." So it appears a great part of this has been common knowledge except for the $243.6M criminal penalty. In any case, it is a sad day for BA.

IMO it's very cynical for DoJ to talk about "a total criminal monetary amount of over $2.5 billion, composed of a criminal monetary penalty of $243.6 million, compensation payments to Boeing’s 737 MAX airline customers of $1.77 billion, and the establishment of a $500 million crash-victim beneficiaries fund to compensate the heirs, relatives, and legal beneficiaries of the 346 passengers who died in the Boeing 737 MAX crashes of Lion Air Flight 610 and Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302.".

The reality is Boeing was going to have to pay those compensation amounts regardless of whether or not DoJ found criminal behavior or not.

All DoJ can really take credit for is the $243M criminal penalty.

Stitch wrote:
JibberJim wrote:
So is the 2.5bn a settlement for the DoJ "conspiracy to defraud" or is that a separate action that will also continue?


Boeing agreed to pay the DoJ a $243 million criminal penalty to settle the conspiracy charge.

The remainder of the settlement is for the families of those who lost their lives and to compensate 737 MAX customers for not being able to operate the MAX during the grounding.

Be interesting to know if that $1.77 billion to the airlines is all new money or a formal recognition of compensation payments Boeing has already made to customers or a combination of the two.

Given the construction of the presser it's pretty clear to me DoJ is just counting the existing compensation for customers and victims families as part of the "total criminal monetary amount" and the only new element is Boeing's agreeing to paying a criminal penalty which lets DoJ refer to the whole sum as a "total criminal monetary amount".
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 11:48 pm

Revelation wrote:
IMO it's very cynical for DoJ to talk about "a total criminal monetary amount of over $2.5 billion, composed of a criminal monetary penalty of $243.6 million, compensation payments to Boeing’s 737 MAX airline customers of $1.77 billion, and the establishment of a $500 million crash-victim beneficiaries fund to compensate the heirs, relatives, and legal beneficiaries of the 346 passengers who died in the Boeing 737 MAX crashes of Lion Air Flight 610 and Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302.".

The reality is Boeing was going to have to pay those compensation amounts regardless of whether or not DoJ found criminal behavior or not.

Agree.

Soft agreement. Makes it unlikely any US-based criminal action will now occur, and won't help civil cases either.
 
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Thu Jan 07, 2021 11:55 pm

Boeing says it has already reserved $1.77B of this total in its books already, and the remaining $743M will hit in Q4 2020 so be on last year's books.

Ref: https://twitter.com/jonostrower/status/ ... 4687462401

This lets them move into 2021 with the fiscal damage largely in the rear view mirror.

The sum, plus a few comments on Twitter suggest the $743M is the $243M in criminal penalties and $500M for the victims families, so the $500M is new money but the airline compensation is not.

smartplane wrote:
Soft agreement. Makes it unlikely any US-based criminal action will now occur, and won't help civil cases either.

I agree on the soft agreement part. Not sure why this is not helpful to civil cases, did their lawyers expect more from the DoJ action?

Jon Ostrower said on Twitter:

The deferred prosecution agreement with the DOJ over the 737 Max is being viewed through the narrowest possible aperture. This is about two Boeing employees and what they did, not anything the company in the way they developed MCAS. The $743.6m penalty threads a tiny needle.

Ref: https://twitter.com/jonostrower/status/ ... 8007238658

Soft. Narrow aperture. Threads a tiny needle. All appropriate.

It seems pretty clear that Boeing has succeeded in making Forkner and Gustavsson the fall guys and using their liquor fueled comments on the training side to take away almost all of the attention from how they botched the engineering side. IMO it's hard to explain the botch on the engineering side as a simple error in judgment, but it sems that's the way it's going to go down in the history books.
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Fri Jan 08, 2021 2:05 am

Keep in mind how prosecutors work. You get the people that you can and then you get them to turn on others up the ladder. Just take a look at all of the cases against Corporations in the past (i.e. Enron). There is nothing that prevents that in this agreement. Boeing has to stay clean for 3 years I believe it is. From what you have heard about some the issues in Engineering and probably management do you think that they will accomplish that? Once you get the Technical Pilots and after they are charged you then get the people that you want to get.
 
Jetty
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Fri Jan 08, 2021 3:10 am

Revelation wrote:
the misconduct was neither pervasive across the organization, nor undertaken by a large number of employees, nor facilitated by senior management

Translation: Boeing has succeeded in making Forkner the fall guy for the MCAS tragedy.

I wonder if Boeing used Jedi mind tricks to convince the DoJ this was the case? :irked:
 
BoeingGuy
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Fri Jan 08, 2021 6:36 am

Jetty wrote:
Revelation wrote:
the misconduct was neither pervasive across the organization, nor undertaken by a large number of employees, nor facilitated by senior management

Translation: Boeing has succeeded in making Forkner the fall guy for the MCAS tragedy.

I wonder if Boeing used Jedi mind tricks to convince the DoJ this was the case? :irked:


Completely agree with Revelation. Boeing is making Mark and Patrik scapegoats for systemic leadership problems on the 737 Max and other programs. What, do you think the two of them came up with the idea all by themselves to hide MCAS from the regulators and Boeing leadership had nothing to do with it?

Dave Calhoun’s internal e-mail today basically pointing the finger at them, and implying that no-one else is at fault, kind of offended me. They were pressured by management and leaders, some of whom still have leadership positions all with the blessing of Dave Calhoun.

The Chief Project Engineer of the 737 Max at the time is now the 777-9 Chief Project Engineer, for example.

I don’t in any way defend the inappropriate things that were said in IMs and e-mails, although Mark had a kind of sarcastic sense of humor so I think some of his intent came across poorly when you later read some of his comments. I think some of his poor comments were intended in jest, but look pretty bad when you later read them in the newspaper.

I think those guys are in some sense the victim of intense pressure from above, not the cause of it. I also think that Dave Calhoun and others are quick to make Mark and Patrik scapegoats to cover up for their own leadership’s role in creating the environment where cost beat quality on the 737 Max development.
 
Alfons
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Fri Jan 08, 2021 8:18 am

crimsonchin wrote:
https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/boeing-charged-737-max-fraud-conspiracy-and-agrees-pay-over-25-billion

A pinnacle of transparency and triumph of engineering.


wow, what a bargain. Boeing really gets away free of charge here, nobody is getting hurt (except the perished ones). Aggressivitiy from the state in the hearings, but at the end of the day, they all sleep under the same blanket.
 
iamlucky13
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Fri Jan 08, 2021 8:25 am

Aquila3 wrote:
morrisond wrote:
You can't take the small sample of the MCAS 1.0 MAX and extrapolate it into the future.

Well, even considering hundreds of lives a small sample (I don't) , I believe that this was exactly one of the reasons why the Max was grounded. Someone in the authorities that control civil aviation had extrapolated that when the Max would be in full service with numbers alike the NG the event would occur every couple of weeks. Sorry if the numbers are not precise, but that i believe was the ballpark.So someone considered the two consecutive crashes not "outliers" , but representative of a definite trend. I think they did right, and more so at the second crash. Of course you are free to disagree with them (as I seem to remember you did) but that's it. It was grounded from almost all the authorities of the planet, and at least also from the US one.


Hundreds of people dying is an important number from a human standpoint.

If you're discussing statistics though, it was two events.

I remember the analysis I think you are referencing. I don't think it was an extrapolation, but based on the likelihoods of the sort of failures occurring that would cause erroneous MCAS activation. Also, I think it was considering just the likelihood of activation, not the likelihood of crashes. The initial assumption was that crews should have been able to respond and prevent a crash base don existing training. Obviously, that's not how it worked out.

I might need to go dig up that report again.
 
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enzo011
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Fri Jan 08, 2021 8:28 am

The way I read it this is only for the case of the DOJ. Boeing will still face civil suits from the families.

From the link and article,

David Calhoun, Boeing’s chief executive, laid blame with the two former employees and said they had shown “deep disrespect” for the company’s customers and the government.

“While we deeply regret the conduct described in the agreement, I am confident that it isn’t reflective of our employees as a whole or the culture or character of our company,” he said. “Every day I see members of our team communicating proactively and transparently with our regulators, even when — indeed, especially when — the issue is difficult.”

Attorneys for family members of those who died said they would continue to pursue civil cases against Boeing.

“It’s our position that these allegations are just the tip of the iceberg of Boeing’s wrongdoing,” said Robert A. Clifford, a Chicago-based attorney representing many of the families.


So a couple of things, well done Calhoun for fingering only two people for this. That shows great leadership. Seems just about right for the times. (Yes, this is sarcastic)

Secondly, I am sure others can clear this up but this surely makes it easier for the families. Boeing has admitted fault to make the DOJ criminal case go away against its big bosses. They in turn fingered two lower down employees but their managers and then upper management gets away with their responsibility.

Boeing’s agreement with the Justice Department required it to admit wrongdoing, but if the company adheres to its terms for three years, prosecutors will agree to dismiss the criminal case.


Interested wrote:
2.5 Billion dollars does not seem enough for something as criminal and life changing for so many families as this deception

And surely some people from Boeing need to go to jail for this as well?


I guess this is like the Simpson-Brown family still suing OJ Simpson, even after he was found not guilty. One was the case from the authorities, the families can still move forward. However I am sure Boeing will be working very hard to get rid of those cases and make this go away. If new evidence is unearthed I guess it would force the DOJ to look again and they would then pursue criminal charges. Interesting timing that this has happened now as well, before the new team comes in from Biden.

Let us just reflect what Boeing has done with this settlement and words from Calhoun, they have admitted that only two people in the company was responsible for the actions that led to MCAS being hidden from the airlines and 346 people dying. Again, I am astounded that they have gone down this route, but I guess when jail time is threatened people will do desperate things.
 
FluidFlow
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Fri Jan 08, 2021 9:56 am

This is not over yet. For example, the 1.77bn for the airlines is only what is spoken from the DoJ as compensation for hiding information from the users of the MAX. In law it is really important, that this settlement is only for the specific offence that was under investigation.

I do not think that the 1.77bn also covers other costs like loss of revenue, increased costs to cover the loss of capacity, etc. This costs are a result of Boeing not being able to deliver a product it promised, not because they hid information.
 
TC957
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Fri Jan 08, 2021 10:19 am

Revelation wrote:
Looking at the RTS thread, we don't see any significant signs of public rejection of the MAX.

To me this is no surprise.

In a sad way COVID is helping, in that people have other things on their mind rather than the MAX.

By the time traffic ramps up there will be a lot of MAXes in a lot of fleets and in general people will get on them without batting an eye.

We survived COVID, now get me the cheapest flight to Miami or Ibiza please will be the order of the day.

Just wait till the UK CAA give TUI and Ryanair the green light to fly the MAX.
I bet the press will soon be all over that with negative connections to the crashes, and probably advice on how to spot a MAX at the departure gate from the regular 738's. I have already had clients on a South African itinerary I'm working on that involve Comair flights saying they have found out Comair have 2 MAX8's and don't want to fly Comair in case they get one of them.
 
Noshow
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Fri Jan 08, 2021 1:32 pm

Does the UK CAA do a separate MAX evaluation now or are they accepting what EASA decides?
 
morrisond
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Fri Jan 08, 2021 2:36 pm

iamlucky13 wrote:
Aquila3 wrote:
morrisond wrote:
You can't take the small sample of the MCAS 1.0 MAX and extrapolate it into the future.

Well, even considering hundreds of lives a small sample (I don't) , I believe that this was exactly one of the reasons why the Max was grounded. Someone in the authorities that control civil aviation had extrapolated that when the Max would be in full service with numbers alike the NG the event would occur every couple of weeks. Sorry if the numbers are not precise, but that i believe was the ballpark.So someone considered the two consecutive crashes not "outliers" , but representative of a definite trend. I think they did right, and more so at the second crash. Of course you are free to disagree with them (as I seem to remember you did) but that's it. It was grounded from almost all the authorities of the planet, and at least also from the US one.


Hundreds of people dying is an important number from a human standpoint.

If you're discussing statistics though, it was two events.

I remember the analysis I think you are referencing. I don't think it was an extrapolation, but based on the likelihoods of the sort of failures occurring that would cause erroneous MCAS activation. Also, I think it was considering just the likelihood of activation, not the likelihood of crashes. The initial assumption was that crews should have been able to respond and prevent a crash base don existing training. Obviously, that's not how it worked out.

I might need to go dig up that report again.


You have both taken my comments totally out of context by partially quoting and misconstrued them. Aquila3 was saying the MAX 2.0 would have the same crash rate due to MCAS as MAX 1.0 so no one should fly it. I was simply pointing out that you can't use the small number of MAX 1.0 flights and the fatal number of crashes that happened with that small sample size and extrapolate it into the future as the MAX is different - hopefully the airlines have done the training and the pilots should now be aware of MCAS.
 
IADFCO
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Fri Jan 08, 2021 2:42 pm

This settlement pretty much closes the book on any hope of finding out what the aerodynamic problem of the MAX is.
 
sxf24
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Fri Jan 08, 2021 3:01 pm

IADFCO wrote:
This settlement pretty much closes the book on any hope of finding out what the aerodynamic problem of the MAX is.


There are no aerodynamic problems. That is why the FAA certified and allowed return to service and why other regulators will follow.
 
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Revelation
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Fri Jan 08, 2021 3:32 pm

BoeingGuy wrote:
Completely agree with Revelation. Boeing is making Mark and Patrik scapegoats for systemic leadership problems on the 737 Max and other programs. What, do you think the two of them came up with the idea all by themselves to hide MCAS from the regulators and Boeing leadership had nothing to do with it?

Indeed. The DoJ presser said:

Boeing’s employees chose the path of profit over candor by concealing material information from the FAA concerning the operation of its 737 Max airplane and engaging in an effort to cover up their deception.

DoJ doesn't seem to want to address WHY they felt such a profit motivation. I doubt avoiding sim training on MAX would make much of a difference to these two guy's financial picture. Their bonus structure would probably mean a good year means some nice vacations, not life changing wealth. On the other hand, further up the corporate ladder...

You might get more candor out of these guys if you put them on trial where they had no choice but to lay things bare, but Boeing seems to have paid their way out of that kind of uncomfortable situation.

BoeingGuy wrote:
Dave Calhoun’s internal e-mail today basically pointing the finger at them, and implying that no-one else is at fault, kind of offended me. They were pressured by management and leaders, some of whom still have leadership positions all with the blessing of Dave Calhoun.

I hadn't read his statement till I read the ST report ( https://www.seattletimes.com/business/b ... r-737-max/ ). It says:

“While we deeply regret the conduct described in the agreement, I am confident that it isn’t reflective of our employees as a whole or the culture or character of our company,” Calhoun told employees.

I'm sure there were more than a few people thinking "baloney" (or some other word starting with "b") when they read that email.

BoeingGuy wrote:
I think those guys are in some sense the victim of intense pressure from above, not the cause of it. I also think that Dave Calhoun and others are quick to make Mark and Patrik scapegoats to cover up for their own leadership’s role in creating the environment where cost beat quality on the 737 Max development.

Absolutely. Them and many others I would think felt intense pressure to game the system in the company's favor, starting with the "four second guy" who decided that pilots would recognized MCAS as a runaway stabilizer and correct it in four seconds. How do we know he didn't "chose the path of profit over candor" like Forkner and Gustavsson are now openly accused of? Or the test pilots who experienced MCAS repeated activations and kept that information within their team? No one likes to report trouble if the guidance is all about reducing cost and improving profit.

One bit from the ST piece said it pretty well:

Yet Michael Stumo, father of Samya Rose Stumo, 24, who died in the Ethiopian crash, said the settlement “holds no one at the company accountable” and called the fine “a rounding error for Boeing.”

This settlement is protection for Boeing rather than justice,” Stumo said. “It is a continuation of Boeing evading accountability and transparency.

I often find the statements of the victims families are (obviously) heavily influenced by their grief, but this one is quite measured.

The ST piece makes the point that Boeing is happy to have this settlement because a conviction of guilt would mean its DoD contracts would be suspended for years to come. This make me think DoJ feared to press too hard.

I really don't know what more we could expect from DoJ short of more insiders being caught red handed or any core players from the MAX team turning state's witness.

The bottom line, though, is if Boeing doesn't change its culture there will be more MCASes where some overstressed worker in the trenches thinks the right thing to do is to sandbag the regulators and cut corners on safety and will do it knowing that unless they are the one or two fall guys they will get away with it and end their days living on the nice pay and benefits they've accumulated by being a company guy.

Calhoun is just enabling future bad behavior by continuing to evade accountability and transparency.

Calhoun may feel he's dodged a bullet, but he may be heading down the path towards an exploding atom bomb.

FluidFlow wrote:
This is not over yet. For example, the 1.77bn for the airlines is only what is spoken from the DoJ as compensation for hiding information from the users of the MAX. In law it is really important, that this settlement is only for the specific offence that was under investigation.

I do not think that the 1.77bn also covers other costs like loss of revenue, increased costs to cover the loss of capacity, etc. This costs are a result of Boeing not being able to deliver a product it promised, not because they hid information.

ST says:

Aside from the cost of compensating victims’ families, Boeing has previously estimated the total cost of the MAX grounding in extra production expenses and customer compensation costs at $20.6 billion — including $8.8 billion in compensation to airlines.

This puts things into context. As you say, the $1.77B is just the part DoJ suggests is related to this criminal act, the overall picture is over $20B now, with airlines getting $8.8B overall.

TC957 wrote:
Revelation wrote:
Looking at the RTS thread, we don't see any significant signs of public rejection of the MAX.

To me this is no surprise.

In a sad way COVID is helping, in that people have other things on their mind rather than the MAX.

By the time traffic ramps up there will be a lot of MAXes in a lot of fleets and in general people will get on them without batting an eye.

We survived COVID, now get me the cheapest flight to Miami or Ibiza please will be the order of the day.

Just wait till the UK CAA give TUI and Ryanair the green light to fly the MAX.
I bet the press will soon be all over that with negative connections to the crashes, and probably advice on how to spot a MAX at the departure gate from the regular 738's. I have already had clients on a South African itinerary I'm working on that involve Comair flights saying they have found out Comair have 2 MAX8's and don't want to fly Comair in case they get one of them.

I know you are saying wait for things to come, but that was said in the US as well, and so far, nothing. Of course I would not call one passenger booking away from Comair a significant sign of public rejection. I'm sure there will be a measurable number of passengers booking away from MAX, at least initially. It'll be hard to measure given all the other problems in the aviation sector. And I'm sure there will be a lot of sensationalist stories in the UK tabloids.

Heck, even if Comair would decide to dump Boeing all together and go Airbus it would not be significant with respect to Boeing's bottom line, given they are already $20B in the hole. I'm sure if even that happened they would just "turn turtle", pull in their head, absorb the damage, and try to move on. What else can they do?
Wake up to find out that you are the eyes of the world
The heart has its beaches, its homeland and thoughts of its own
Wake now, discover that you are the song that the morning brings
The heart has its seasons, its evenings and songs of its own
 
iamlucky13
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Fri Jan 08, 2021 6:34 pm

morrisond wrote:
iamlucky13 wrote:
Aquila3 wrote:
Well, even considering hundreds of lives a small sample (I don't) , I believe that this was exactly one of the reasons why the Max was grounded. Someone in the authorities that control civil aviation had extrapolated that when the Max would be in full service with numbers alike the NG the event would occur every couple of weeks. Sorry if the numbers are not precise, but that i believe was the ballpark.So someone considered the two consecutive crashes not "outliers" , but representative of a definite trend. I think they did right, and more so at the second crash. Of course you are free to disagree with them (as I seem to remember you did) but that's it. It was grounded from almost all the authorities of the planet, and at least also from the US one.


Hundreds of people dying is an important number from a human standpoint.

If you're discussing statistics though, it was two events.

I remember the analysis I think you are referencing. I don't think it was an extrapolation, but based on the likelihoods of the sort of failures occurring that would cause erroneous MCAS activation. Also, I think it was considering just the likelihood of activation, not the likelihood of crashes. The initial assumption was that crews should have been able to respond and prevent a crash base don existing training. Obviously, that's not how it worked out.

I might need to go dig up that report again.


You have both taken my comments totally out of context by partially quoting and misconstrued them. Aquila3 was saying the MAX 2.0 would have the same crash rate due to MCAS as MAX 1.0 so no one should fly it. I was simply pointing out that you can't use the small number of MAX 1.0 flights and the fatal number of crashes that happened with that small sample size and extrapolate it into the future as the MAX is different - hopefully the airlines have done the training and the pilots should now be aware of MCAS.


I actually agree with you that MAX 2.0 has crucial differences from MAX 1.0, and was clarifying the sample size for MAX 1.0 is 2, not 346.

Even on MAX 1.0, my recollection is it was not an extrapolation from 2-samples, but a probabilistic assessment, and for MCAS malfunctions, not crashes. The logic at that time was that MCAS malfunctions can be dealt with by reinforcing existing training, so the fix could be a high-priority in-service, rather than necessitate a grounding. That logic was ultimately rejected based on the second crash and simulator tests of crew responses.
 
IADFCO
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Fri Jan 08, 2021 11:17 pm

sxf24 wrote:
IADFCO wrote:
This settlement pretty much closes the book on any hope of finding out what the aerodynamic problem of the MAX is.


There are no aerodynamic problems. That is why the FAA certified and allowed return to service and why other regulators will follow.


Of course there are. They are the reason why MCAS was developed in the first place.
 
iamlucky13
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Sat Jan 09, 2021 12:07 am

enzo011 wrote:
The way I read it this is only for the case of the DOJ. Boeing will still face civil suits from the families.


RIght. I don't know of any way the DOJ can pre-empt a civil suit. These are separate proceedings.

enzo011 wrote:
Secondly, I am sure others can clear this up but this surely makes it easier for the families. Boeing has admitted fault to make the DOJ criminal case go away against its big bosses. They in turn fingered two lower down employees but their managers and then upper management gets away with their responsibility.


Having an admission of criminal guilt will make the civil case easier. The admission is fraud for the certification, rather than negligence for the accidents, but the link to support the civil case is established by the technical reports. I'm certain Boeing recognizes they will be paying out a lot more in civil damages and punitive awards, although they might argue there is shared culpability.

Also note that it was the Department of Justice that identified the actions of two employees as fraudulent, thereby establishing the employer as party to the fraud. The Seattle Times article and the DOJ release both discuss this a bit.

Also, the settlement specifically reserves the right of the DOJ to bring charges against any individuals involved, which does not have to be limited to those two. I do not believe the DOJ has stated whether they are preparing any cases against individuals. I suspect they are. However, successfully prosecuting them would depend on having enough evidence to constitute proof beyond a reasonable doubt of an individual crime. That won't be easy when corporate decision making is usually a chain of decisions by numerous people, each typically with partial information. I'm skeptical it is as clear in this case as it was in Enron, for example.

If they have evidence like an email where an engineer tells a manager, "we are required to tell the FAA about this change," and the manager says "That will delay our schedule, leave the FAA out of it if you value your job," that would be basically a slam dunk. If on the other hand, it's more like "I don't think this change meets the criteria for when further review is required," and the manager says, "That's a relief. I was hoping not to have to extend the schedule," then it is less clear if there was fraudulent intent or negligence involved.

I'm using generic examples because the actual Forkner messages are not so neatly written. I don't perceive them as having been intended literally, but I don't care to get drawn into an argument on that point.

Please also note that the Forkner messages are tangible evidence of Forkner's involvement, and as an employee of Boeing, tangible evidence against Boeing. They are not tangible evidence against anyone else in Boeing who was not copied on the messages originally. It is a good assumption they are not the only evidence, as Forkner probably has given additional testimony that is not yet public, and there may be other messages the DOJ is not ready to release yet..

Revelation wrote:
DoJ doesn't seem to want to address WHY they felt such a profit motivation.


That is a question that should be asked, and I presume is being asked by investigators. I hope my comments above help clarify what might be involved in answering the question.

Revelation wrote:
You might get more candor out of these guys if you put them on trial where they had no choice but to lay things bare, but Boeing seems to have paid their way out of that kind of uncomfortable situation.


I want to re-emphasize that the DOJ agreement specifically preserves the right to prosecute individuals. I repeat this because I anticipate there will be ongoing confusion about this. We will have to wait and see whether the DOJ decides they have viable cases against any individuals.

Revelation wrote:
The ST piece makes the point that Boeing is happy to have this settlement because a conviction of guilt would mean its DoD contracts would be suspended for years to come. This make me think DoJ feared to press too hard.


I don't see a clear case that suspension of DoD contracts would accomplish any justice for the deceased or anyone else.

Also, I might be missing something, but if Mr. Gates is referring to 48 CFR § 252.203, it does not appear to prevent the company as a whole from being involved in government contracts, but relates to specific individuals and specific contracts.

Regardless, at a minimum Boeing is happy to have this settlement, because they know if it went to court, they would lose, and the penalty would be worse.
Last edited by iamlucky13 on Sat Jan 09, 2021 12:28 am, edited 1 time in total.
 
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Stitch
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Sat Jan 09, 2021 12:23 am

IADFCO wrote:
Of course there are. They are the reason why MCAS was developed in the first place.


It's been said time and time again that the only "problem" is that at certain uncommon flight envelopes, the control yoke feedback does not meet FAA FARs and MCAS works so that the control yoke feedback does meet the FAR.

If the FAA had allowed Boeing to ignore that FAR, then there would have been no need for MCAS. Of course, that would have meant pilots would have to intuit the airframe was in one of those uncommon flight envelopes another way, but...


If the 737MAX was inherently unstable in all, most, or even many flight regimens and needed MCAS to keep it stable, then it would have activated far more often than it did and we'd likely have lost frames far earlier and far more often.
Last edited by Stitch on Sat Jan 09, 2021 12:25 am, edited 1 time in total.
 
iamlucky13
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Sat Jan 09, 2021 12:24 am

IADFCO wrote:
sxf24 wrote:
IADFCO wrote:
This settlement pretty much closes the book on any hope of finding out what the aerodynamic problem of the MAX is.


There are no aerodynamic problems. That is why the FAA certified and allowed return to service and why other regulators will follow.


Of course there are. They are the reason why MCAS was developed in the first place.


The DOJ does not have expertise on aerodynamics and it wasn't their responsibility to determine what aerodynamic issues the MAX has. The FAA and EASA have that expertise and have published their conclusions, and I daresay I'm not the only person who ultimately was glad that the EASA performed their own certification.

I hesitate to even ask what you are saying they missed, because we've already gone around in circles on that matter so many times.
 
Chemist
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Re: Boeing 737MAX Grounding, General Discussion Thread, Q1 2021

Sat Jan 09, 2021 2:19 am

There are no aerodynamic problems. That is why the FAA certified and allowed return to service and why other regulators will follow.

Of course there are. They are the reason why MCAS was developed in the first place.


Most swept wing airliners have yaw dampers to handle dutch roll. So they all have "aerodynamic problems". Per the comment, those airliners have "aerodynamic problems" - including the A320, 777, 747, A380, etc. On most airliners, "aerodynamic problems" are routinely mitigated by automated control systems.

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