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keesje
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Seattle Times 16 May : Deep WN Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Tue May 17, 2022 1:13 pm

Southwest Airlines proposed a ploy to deceive FAA on Boeing 737 MAX, legal filing alleges

According to a legal filing by attorneys pursuing a lawsuit against the airline, Southwest manager Bill Lusk asked Boeing officials, including the MAX chief technical pilot Mark Forkner, if engineers could install a new flight control safety alert required for the MAX on a single one of Southwest’s older 737s — and then deactivate it once the MAX was certified.

https://www.seattletimes.com/business/b ... g-737-max/

I think airlines can ask all they want, but the OE remains fully responsible for the TC. A culture of safety first, openly discussing risks and way to satisfy safety requirements iso avoiding them is to be expected from everybody in a aviation certification process.

Image
Source: https://www.pngkit.com/so/737-max/
Last edited by SQ22 on Sat May 21, 2022 4:21 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Title updated
 
NLINK
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Tue May 17, 2022 1:34 pm

This is not surprising at all with the culture of Boeing and Southwest.
 
sxf24
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Tue May 17, 2022 1:54 pm

Instead of linking to the hack job of a Seattle Times story, we should be discussing the original WSJ reporting that Dominic copied-and-pasted from. I believe that discussion was placed in the general Southwest thread.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/southwest- ... 1652353202

While the quotes cleaned from redacted documents are juicy and raise many questions, my mind is boggled by the origins of the lawsuit…
 
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keesje
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Tue May 17, 2022 2:15 pm

sxf24 wrote:
Instead of linking to the hack job of a Seattle Times story, we should be discussing the original WSJ reporting that Dominic copied-and-pasted from. I believe that discussion was placed in the general Southwest thread.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/southwest- ... 1652353202

While the quotes cleaned from redacted documents are juicy and raise many questions, my mind is boggled by the origins of the lawsuit…


Shoot the messenger? I value Dominic Gates / Seattle Times coverage, opinion and independency on this topic 2-3 levels above WSJ.
And I'm not the only one. https://www.seattletimes.com/inside-the ... -coverage/
Last edited by keesje on Tue May 17, 2022 2:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
AMALH747430
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Tue May 17, 2022 2:20 pm

sxf24 wrote:
Instead of linking to the hack job of a Seattle Times story, we should be discussing the original WSJ reporting that Dominic copied-and-pasted from. I believe that discussion was placed in the general Southwest thread.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/southwest- ... 1652353202

While the quotes cleaned from redacted documents are juicy and raise many questions, my mind is boggled by the origins of the lawsuit…


The WSJ article is behind a paywall. I found that out the hard way when I tried to post it on Friday. I was able to read the whole thing through a Facebook link though.

It is an interesting point of discussion. I know airframe manufactures and airlines discuss training and It’s not at all surprising. Under ordinary circumstances I see nothing wrong with that either. What may have happened here though, is an airline that (more than any other) had an interest in keeping an airframe alive and under the same type certificate for financial reasons assisting the manufacturer in creating the illusion of commonality.

I’m interested to see where this lawsuit goes. This may turn out to be nothing more than normal back and forth between Boeing and WN but it looks like there’s potential for much more. It also depends on just how much Boeing let WN in on. WN may well have been duped by Boeing just as much as the regulators were.
 
sxf24
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Tue May 17, 2022 2:30 pm

keesje wrote:
sxf24 wrote:
Instead of linking to the hack job of a Seattle Times story, we should be discussing the original WSJ reporting that Dominic copied-and-pasted from. I believe that discussion was placed in the general Southwest thread.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/southwest- ... 1652353202

While the quotes cleaned from redacted documents are juicy and raise many questions, my mind is boggled by the origins of the lawsuit…


Shoot the messenger? I value Dominic Gates / Seattle Times coverage, opinion and independency on this topic 2-3 levels above WSJ.
And I'm not the only one. https://www.seattletimes.com/inside-the ... -coverage/


Past success is not indicative of current capability. I find Gates’ reporting to be sloppy and lazy - demonstrated here by repurposing WSJ’s reporting a week later with a couple of new quotes from his small stable of sources.

AMALH747430 wrote:
sxf24 wrote:
Instead of linking to the hack job of a Seattle Times story, we should be discussing the original WSJ reporting that Dominic copied-and-pasted from. I believe that discussion was placed in the general Southwest thread.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/southwest- ... 1652353202

While the quotes cleaned from redacted documents are juicy and raise many questions, my mind is boggled by the origins of the lawsuit…


The WSJ article is behind a paywall. I found that out the hard way when I tried to post it on Friday. I was able to read the whole thing through a Facebook link though.

It is an interesting point of discussion. I know airframe manufactures and airlines discuss training and It’s not at all surprising. Under ordinary circumstances I see nothing wrong with that either. What may have happened here though, is an airline that (more than any other) had an interest in keeping an airframe alive and under the same type certificate for financial reasons assisting the manufacturer in creating the illusion of commonality.

I’m interested to see where this lawsuit goes. This may turn out to be nothing more than normal back and forth between Boeing and WN but it looks like there’s potential for much more. It also depends on just how much Boeing let WN in on. WN may well have been duped by Boeing just as much as the regulators were.


I think the key questions are was information known at the time to be critical intentionally removed or hidden from pilots or the FAA and did any party lie during subsequent questioning.
 
mcdu
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Tue May 17, 2022 3:14 pm

I’m surprised he didn’t mention that Forkner was hired as a pilot at SWA after he got the MAX certified with the SWA demands.
 
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cirrusdragoon
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Tue May 17, 2022 8:26 pm

shame! <bell> shame! shame! <bell>

Lessons to be learned from this revelation, how success breeds corruption and greed.
 
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WesternDC6B
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Tue May 17, 2022 8:35 pm

NLINK wrote:
This is not surprising at all with the culture of Boeing and Southwest.


Boeing was in control on this. They could’ve just said, “no”. What would Southwest do? Go to airbus?
 
freakyrat
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Tue May 17, 2022 8:40 pm

Boeing could have redesigned the MAX flightdeck to make it more like the A320 which everything is grouped logically and labelled and most toggle switches replaced with push buttons and the whole flightdeck decluttered. Simplified so that it is an easy transition for the prospective airline pilot.
 
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IceCream
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Tue May 17, 2022 8:43 pm

cirrusdragoon wrote:
shame! <bell> shame! shame! <bell>

Lessons to be learned from this revelation, how success breeds corruption and greed.

Agreed lol. I wonder how bad any potential consequences could be for WN.
 
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gunsontheroof
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Tue May 17, 2022 8:47 pm

freakyrat wrote:
Boeing could have redesigned the MAX flightdeck to make it more like the A320 which everything is grouped logically and labelled and most toggle switches replaced with push buttons and the whole flightdeck decluttered. Simplified so that it is an easy transition for the prospective airline pilot.


How does that help with retaining commonality for NG operators? I’m not a pilot, but I’m familiar with the 737 cockpit from MSFS and an actual sim and don’t find it particularly confusing…
 
freakyrat
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Tue May 17, 2022 8:48 pm

I read that the latest race for Boeing is to try to get the certification of the MAX10 done by a certain deadline so they do not have to install the modern ECAM systems similar to the one on the Airbus A320.
 
freakyrat
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Tue May 17, 2022 8:59 pm

gunsontheroof wrote:
freakyrat wrote:
Boeing could have redesigned the MAX flightdeck to make it more like the A320 which everything is grouped logically and labelled and most toggle switches replaced with push buttons and the whole flightdeck decluttered. Simplified so that it is an easy transition for the prospective airline pilot.


How does that help with retaining commonality for NG operators? I’m not a pilot, but I’m familiar with the 737 cockpit from MSFS and an actual sim and don’t find it particularly confusing…


I'm just a GA pilot of the old round dial days and I can understand the point of retaining comonality. I know when I was working in FSS and rode a few jumpseats for training purposes in both aircraft I just observed how the A320 was designed and when I had the chance to play in the A320 SIM I was amazed how easy it was to figure it out and find things because of the way it was designed. I'm sure old 737 pilots feel the same about their aircraft and if I had a chance to get in a 737 SIM I may feel the same way.

I know when Southwest got the B737-300 and glass cockpit displays they had Boeing design it so that they could bring up the old round dial configuration on the displays. I know in the A320 SIM I could change the video map Nav display to the regular ADF or VOR instrument from my round dial days.

Nice conversation though and thanks for your thoughts.
 
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Polot
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Tue May 17, 2022 9:20 pm

WesternDC6B wrote:
NLINK wrote:
This is not surprising at all with the culture of Boeing and Southwest.


Boeing was in control on this. They could’ve just said, “no”. What would Southwest do? Go to airbus?

It’s entirely possible that is what Boeing did.

The articles do not allege that Boeing actually did what Southwest suggested. They are just reporting that Southwest asked Boeing.
 
AeroVega
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Tue May 17, 2022 9:23 pm

mcdu wrote:
I’m surprised he didn’t mention that Forkner was hired as a pilot at SWA after he got the MAX certified with the SWA demands.


That is mentioned further below in the article.
 
Avatar2go
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Tue May 17, 2022 9:44 pm

As discussed earlier, the SW contract clause containing penalties for simulation training is common language. That was widely reported at the time it became public knowledge.

As far as the MCAS fix, that actually was done in 6 weeks. The longer software rewrite was to address another issue, that had a very remote probability but could have resulted in a similar kind of accident. No one saw that coming, but the FAA required it out of an abundance of caution.
 
mcdu
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Wed May 18, 2022 12:13 am

Avatar2go wrote:
As discussed earlier, the SW contract clause containing penalties for simulation training is common language. That was widely reported at the time it became public knowledge.

As far as the MCAS fix, that actually was done in 6 weeks. The longer software rewrite was to address another issue, that had a very remote probability but could have resulted in a similar kind of accident. No one saw that coming, but the FAA required it out of an abundance of caution.



What is normal is the airline will negotiate paid training for the pilots with an order. What Southwest was asking was unusual and perhaps illegal. The courts will decide.

Many may not know that SWA had covers placed over switches in the 737 -300’s and ‘500’s for years covering items different than the -200. Autobrakes, autothrottles, VNAV and LNAV were covered to prevent usage by pilots. This was all to prevent the need train pilots on how to use these systems. Also SWA was one of the very few airlines that required newhire pilots to pay for their own type ratings to be hired at SWA.

There is a very long history of SWA not wanting training costs. The SWA flights that overran the runway’s in BUR and MDW were not using auto brakes as they were not allowed by SWA policy at the time. Perhaps they could have helped?
 
BoeingGuy
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Wed May 18, 2022 1:04 am

Polot wrote:
WesternDC6B wrote:
NLINK wrote:
This is not surprising at all with the culture of Boeing and Southwest.


Boeing was in control on this. They could’ve just said, “no”. What would Southwest do? Go to airbus?

It’s entirely possible that is what Boeing did.

The articles do not allege that Boeing actually did what Southwest suggested. They are just reporting that Southwest asked Boeing.


Correct. It never happened. No such thing ever occurred. Mr. Ludtke did an excellent job helping to develop RCAS, but I believe none of his whistleblowing. He got laid off and left Boeing very bitter.

I had some involvement in RCAS and never heard Boeing management suggesting any such nonsense. It’s also not trivial to add RCAS to a 737 NG. Several systems have to be changed. Not like you just flip a switch. I’m honestly skeptical of some of this story.

Ironic thing is that RCAS is a safety enhancement. There are the usual idiotic drama queen comments on the Seattle Times about how Boeing wants to commit murder. In fact part of RCAS was required on the 737 Max and KC-46 as part of an updated CFR requiring alerting for Autopilot roll saturation. However, part of RCAS was added by Boeing as a safety enhancement as part of the Loss of Control SAFETY INITIATIVE. So the people saying this is another alleged example of Boeing cutting corners on safety to enhance profits are the usual uneducated absurdity.

Never let facts get in the way of an overly dramatic story.

The 777 and 787 don’t require RCAS due to greater autopilot roll authority and fly by wire envelope protections.
 
757223
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Wed May 18, 2022 1:39 am

I'd be curious to know if Boeing solicited feedback on this from other significant customers, such as United, Alaska, etc.? Putting all of your eggs in one basket and solely relying on one carrier's input is very short-sighted, if that is indeed what took place. Regardless of what WN said/didn't say or did/didn't do, the buck stops with Boeing and if Boeing fell for this hook, line, and sinker, it is quite concerning.
 
BoeingGuy
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Wed May 18, 2022 1:52 am

757223 wrote:
I'd be curious to know if Boeing solicited feedback on this from other significant customers, such as United, Alaska, etc.? Putting all of your eggs in one basket and solely relying on one carrier's input is very short-sighted, if that is indeed what took place. Regardless of what WN said/didn't say or did/didn't do, the buck stops with Boeing and if Boeing fell for this hook, line, and sinker, it is quite concerning.


Not sure if you read the story or comments. None of it ever happened.
 
orlandocfi
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Wed May 18, 2022 2:07 am

757223 wrote:
I'd be curious to know if Boeing solicited feedback on this from other significant customers, such as United, Alaska, etc.? Putting all of your eggs in one basket and solely relying on one carrier's input is very short-sighted, if that is indeed what took place. Regardless of what WN said/didn't say or did/didn't do, the buck stops with Boeing and if Boeing fell for this hook, line, and sinker, it is quite concerning.


As the largest 737 operator, WN is of course very influential in the development of variants, but all 737 operators worldwide provide input for sure. It’s easy to scapegoat WN, but I’m almost certain that an investigation would find that numerous airlines had input on, or concurrence with certain design features. Minimizing training costs is a vested interest of all airlines worldwide, not just WN.
 
Avatar2go
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Wed May 18, 2022 2:20 am

mcdu wrote:

What is normal is the airline will negotiate paid training for the pilots with an order. What Southwest was asking was unusual and perhaps illegal. The courts will decide.

Many may not know that SWA had covers placed over switches in the 737 -300’s and ‘500’s for years covering items different than the -200. Autobrakes, autothrottles, VNAV and LNAV were covered to prevent usage by pilots. This was all to prevent the need train pilots on how to use these systems. Also SWA was one of the very few airlines that required newhire pilots to pay for their own type ratings to be hired at SWA.

There is a very long history of SWA not wanting training costs. The SWA flights that overran the runway’s in BUR and MDW were not using auto brakes as they were not allowed by SWA policy at the time. Perhaps they could have helped?


Here is an article about the MAX hearings that confirms the language was not unusual. Other airlines have said this as well.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-boei ... SKBN1X92D4
 
Cubsrule
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Wed May 18, 2022 11:12 am

mcdu wrote:
There is a very long history of SWA not wanting training costs. The SWA flights that overran the runway’s in BUR and MDW were not using auto brakes as they were not allowed by SWA policy at the time. Perhaps they could have helped?


You might re-review the accident report for the MDW accident. They used auto brakes and it sounds like the auto brakes worked properly.
 
mcdu
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Wed May 18, 2022 11:12 am

orlandocfi wrote:
757223 wrote:
I'd be curious to know if Boeing solicited feedback on this from other significant customers, such as United, Alaska, etc.? Putting all of your eggs in one basket and solely relying on one carrier's input is very short-sighted, if that is indeed what took place. Regardless of what WN said/didn't say or did/didn't do, the buck stops with Boeing and if Boeing fell for this hook, line, and sinker, it is quite concerning.


As the largest 737 operator, WN is of course very influential in the development of variants, but all 737 operators worldwide provide input for sure. It’s easy to scapegoat WN, but I’m almost certain that an investigation would find that numerous airlines had input on, or concurrence with certain design features. Minimizing training costs is a vested interest of all airlines worldwide, not just WN.


If this is true why aren’t the other operators facing legal scrutiny?
 
orlandocfi
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Wed May 18, 2022 12:10 pm

mcdu wrote:
orlandocfi wrote:
757223 wrote:
I'd be curious to know if Boeing solicited feedback on this from other significant customers, such as United, Alaska, etc.? Putting all of your eggs in one basket and solely relying on one carrier's input is very short-sighted, if that is indeed what took place. Regardless of what WN said/didn't say or did/didn't do, the buck stops with Boeing and if Boeing fell for this hook, line, and sinker, it is quite concerning.


As the largest 737 operator, WN is of course very influential in the development of variants, but all 737 operators worldwide provide input for sure. It’s easy to scapegoat WN, but I’m almost certain that an investigation would find that numerous airlines had input on, or concurrence with certain design features. Minimizing training costs is a vested interest of all airlines worldwide, not just WN.


If this is true why aren’t the other operators facing legal scrutiny?


There is no investigation yet. There’s a lawsuit and a whistleblower and a couple of news articles. If you really think that WN had sole input into the design of the MAX, I have a bridge in New York I’m looking to sell…
 
zuckie13
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Wed May 18, 2022 12:45 pm

Please remember, this is a class action lawsuit, likely initiated by lawyers who saw $$$ so decide to file it. They targeted Southwest because they found some sliver of evidence they could use. Their intent is most likely to just get a settlement so the class members get $50 an the lawyers pocket a nice payday. There is likely no intention to do anything to actually improve safety here.
 
BoeingGuy
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Wed May 18, 2022 2:43 pm

mcdu wrote:
Many may not know that SWA had covers placed over switches in the 737 -300’s and ‘500’s for years covering items different than the -200. Autobrakes, autothrottles, VNAV and LNAV were covered to prevent usage by pilots. This was all to prevent the need train pilots on how to use these systems. Also SWA was one of the very few airlines that required newhire pilots to pay for their own type ratings to be hired at SWA.


This is not accurate. True that WN did disable the Autothrottle and certain autopilot modes for many years. But it wasn’t because they wanted to avoid training costs or they were cheap.

It was because they wanted their pilots to still be pilots and not computer operators. WN wanted pilots to manually set thrust and be more in the loop on flying their route without using LNAV and VNAV.

With all due respect, from some of your posts you seem to have an axe to grind with WN.
 
BoeingG
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Wed May 18, 2022 2:57 pm

BoeingGuy wrote:
mcdu wrote:
Many may not know that SWA had covers placed over switches in the 737 -300’s and ‘500’s for years covering items different than the -200. Autobrakes, autothrottles, VNAV and LNAV were covered to prevent usage by pilots. This was all to prevent the need train pilots on how to use these systems. Also SWA was one of the very few airlines that required newhire pilots to pay for their own type ratings to be hired at SWA.


This is not accurate. True that WN did disable the Autothrottle and certain autopilot modes for many years. But it wasn’t because they wanted to avoid training costs or they were cheap.

It was because they wanted their pilots to still be pilots and not computer operators. WN wanted pilots to manually set thrust and be more in the loop on flying their route without using LNAV and VNAV.

With all due respect, from some of your posts you seem to have an axe to grind with WN.


"It was because they wanted their pilots to still be pilots and not computer operators. WN wanted pilots to manually set thrust and be more in the loop on flying their route without using LNAV and VNAV."

Source? :smile:
 
BoeingGuy
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Wed May 18, 2022 3:11 pm

BoeingG wrote:
BoeingGuy wrote:
mcdu wrote:
Many may not know that SWA had covers placed over switches in the 737 -300’s and ‘500’s for years covering items different than the -200. Autobrakes, autothrottles, VNAV and LNAV were covered to prevent usage by pilots. This was all to prevent the need train pilots on how to use these systems. Also SWA was one of the very few airlines that required newhire pilots to pay for their own type ratings to be hired at SWA.


This is not accurate. True that WN did disable the Autothrottle and certain autopilot modes for many years. But it wasn’t because they wanted to avoid training costs or they were cheap.

It was because they wanted their pilots to still be pilots and not computer operators. WN wanted pilots to manually set thrust and be more in the loop on flying their route without using LNAV and VNAV.

With all due respect, from some of your posts you seem to have an axe to grind with WN.


"It was because they wanted their pilots to still be pilots and not computer operators. WN wanted pilots to manually set thrust and be more in the loop on flying their route without using LNAV and VNAV."

Source? :smile:


I’ve worked for Boeing for umpteen years and our pilots have talked with them. It was also in a publication years ago. Southwest’s Chief Pilot was quoted as saying that the Autothrottle and VNAV will never be used as long as he’s Chief Pilot for reasons that I stated earlier.
 
AMALH747430
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Wed May 18, 2022 7:14 pm

https://theflyingengineer.com/flightdec ... wests-737/

It’s well documented that WN influenced the design and made modifications to the cockpits of the Classics and NGs in order to maintain 1 type rating for the -200, -300/500, and -700 (and later -800).

The question that now has to be answered is did that influence go too far and lead to some of the Max issues. I’m not saying it did, but it’s a question that must be answered.

No airline has gone to the lengths WN has to maintain one single type rating for 100% of its pilots.

mcdu wrote:
BoeingGuy wrote:
mcdu wrote:
Many may not know that SWA had covers placed over switches in the 737 -300’s and ‘500’s for years covering items different than the -200. Autobrakes, autothrottles, VNAV and LNAV were covered to prevent usage by pilots. This was all to prevent the need train pilots on how to use these systems. Also SWA was one of the very few airlines that required newhire pilots to pay for their own type ratings to be hired at SWA.


This is not accurate. True that WN did disable the Autothrottle and certain autopilot modes for many years. But it wasn’t because they wanted to avoid training costs or they were cheap.

It was because they wanted their pilots to still be pilots and not computer operators. WN wanted pilots to manually set thrust and be more in the loop on flying their route without using LNAV and VNAV.

With all due respect, from some of your posts you seem to have an axe to grind with WN.


I don’t believe that to be true at all. SWA forced their prospective pilots to buy type ratings in the classic 737. To train these pilots in the 300/500 differences was a cost they didn’t want to incur. If they were really not interested in saving money they would have paid for pilots to get their training. The rest of the airlines of that era that were considered career destinations paid for their pilots training.
Last edited by AMALH747430 on Wed May 18, 2022 7:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
chrisair
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Wed May 18, 2022 7:50 pm

BoeingGuy wrote:

This is not accurate. True that WN did disable the Autothrottle and certain autopilot modes for many years. But it wasn’t because they wanted to avoid training costs or they were cheap.

It was because they wanted their pilots to still be pilots and not computer operators. WN wanted pilots to manually set thrust and be more in the loop on flying their route without using LNAV and VNAV.


Hard to believe they've only had L/VNAV and A/T since 2011! They had to activate them for RNP and PBN.
 
Vicenza
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Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Wed May 18, 2022 8:21 pm

zuckie13 wrote:
Please remember, this is a class action lawsuit, likely initiated by lawyers who saw $$$ so decide to file it. They targeted Southwest because they found some sliver of evidence they could use. Their intent is most likely to just get a settlement so the class members get $50 an the lawyers pocket a nice payday. There is likely no intention to do anything to actually improve safety here.


All of that is merely quite an assumption on your part. Can you factually support anything at all in it?
 
sxf24
Posts: 1899
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2007 12:22 pm

Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Wed May 18, 2022 8:48 pm

Vicenza wrote:
zuckie13 wrote:
Please remember, this is a class action lawsuit, likely initiated by lawyers who saw $$$ so decide to file it. They targeted Southwest because they found some sliver of evidence they could use. Their intent is most likely to just get a settlement so the class members get $50 an the lawyers pocket a nice payday. There is likely no intention to do anything to actually improve safety here.


All of that is merely quite an assumption on your part. Can you factually support anything at all in it?


The allegations of the class action lawsuit, that Boeing and Southwest colluded to make passengers think the MAX was safe so that Southwest could continue selling tickets on the MAX at the same price as the NG, are clearly stated.

The intention of a class action lawsuit is almost always to get money in a settlement. The lawyers filing this lawsuit haven’t asked for anything else.
 
zuckie13
Posts: 522
Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2018 8:23 pm

Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Wed May 18, 2022 10:49 pm

Vicenza wrote:
zuckie13 wrote:
Please remember, this is a class action lawsuit, likely initiated by lawyers who saw $$$ so decide to file it. They targeted Southwest because they found some sliver of evidence they could use. Their intent is most likely to just get a settlement so the class members get $50 an the lawyers pocket a nice payday. There is likely no intention to do anything to actually improve safety here.


All of that is merely quite an assumption on your part. Can you factually support anything at all in it?


I can support it based on the history of class action lawsuits in this country. This type of lawsuit, not led by a victim with clear obvious damages, but by "victims" the lawyers who wanted to bring the lawsuit found (they'll have a few named plaintiffs who will get extra money of course) to sue on behalf of. In the end either it'll end up they don't have the goods and will just go away or, like most, it will end in a settlement where nobody actually admits fault, so this lawsuit will accomplish nothing but raising future prices on WN flights to pay for it. If we're gonna blow all this money, let's blow it on actually fixing something, which this particular suit will not.

It's not a pro/con anybody argument, its my general hatred of class action lawsuits here in the US hat just add cost to businesses and accomplish nothing but buying the lawyer a bigger boat.
 
casperCA
Posts: 138
Joined: Tue Mar 03, 2020 9:38 pm

Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Thu May 19, 2022 4:59 am

gunsontheroof wrote:
freakyrat wrote:
Boeing could have redesigned the MAX flightdeck to make it more like the A320 which everything is grouped logically and labelled and most toggle switches replaced with push buttons and the whole flightdeck decluttered. Simplified so that it is an easy transition for the prospective airline pilot.


How does that help with retaining commonality for NG operators? I’m not a pilot, but I’m familiar with the 737 cockpit from MSFS and an actual sim and don’t find it particularly confusing…


It does not.

It helps MAX operators like Air Canada that don't have legacy 737 to deal with by having a better aircraft.

It helps those operators with NG by having a better aircraft with better Human Factors in a few years down the road when all the NG are retired.
 
AMALH747430
Posts: 302
Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2014 9:29 pm

Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Thu May 19, 2022 5:24 pm

I generally agree with the assessment of how these types of lawsuits originate. However, every once in a while something gets uncovered through the civil discovery process in a lawsuit.

I think the Max is a safe airplane after the modifications. However, fixing the problem and getting to the bottom of why it happened are two different things.

The “fixing” part of the equation has been solved. However, I don’t think we’ve completely uncovered the why and how this happened. In the not too distant past we learned that had Sally Ride not passed on some o ring temperature data to General Kutyna, the Rogers Commission may not have uncovered how long NASA knew about the O ring issue with the Space Shuttle that led to the Challenger disaster. If Rick Parks hadn’t gone public with the flawed cleanup plan at Three Mile Island, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission would have rubber stamped Bechtel Corporation’s plan to use a damaged crane to lift wreckage out of the reactor building and people would have been put at risk. This is a lawsuit, not a whistleblower report, but sometimes lawsuits uncover the same sorts of things.

This was the second time Boeing got caught flat footed in the narrow body market and warmed over a 1960’s regional jet that was past it’s prime. it’s also the second time Boeing made decisions to keep it’s biggest customer of the type happy by designing the cockpit and systems so that a pilot certified to fly the older versions could fly this one. It worked out the first time (NG), not so much on the Max. Boeing was in a bad way when Airbus announced the NEO. They got caught off guard and were desperate to answer. They also knew that they’re buggiest customer for the type had to buy in.

Southwest also isn’t “Herb’s Little Airline” anymore. That became apparent in 2008 when the FAA levied a $10.2 million (reduced to $7.5 million) for safety violations. Does this mean Southwest is unsafe? No, I’d say they’re not more or less safe than any other US major. They’re just not “special.” They exist to maximize shareholder value and they’ll do what they have to in order to make that happen. There’s nothing wrong with that unless it compromises safety. We know that WN’s mantra has been “single pilot pool” for a long time. They don’t want to give that up. Did that mentality cause mistakes to be made? We’ll have to see where this leads to find out.

This lawsuit may just be a money grab. It may uncover more of the story of how the Max came to become what it did. Until it plays out we won’t know. I’m not willing to just dismiss it as a money grab until more of the story comes out though.

zuckie13 wrote:
Vicenza wrote:
zuckie13 wrote:
Please remember, this is a class action lawsuit, likely initiated by lawyers who saw $$$ so decide to file it. They targeted Southwest because they found some sliver of evidence they could use. Their intent is most likely to just get a settlement so the class members get $50 an the lawyers pocket a nice payday. There is likely no intention to do anything to actually improve safety here.


All of that is merely quite an assumption on your part. Can you factually support anything at all in it?


I can support it based on the history of class action lawsuits in this country. This type of lawsuit, not led by a victim with clear obvious damages, but by "victims" the lawyers who wanted to bring the lawsuit found (they'll have a few named plaintiffs who will get extra money of course) to sue on behalf of. In the end either it'll end up they don't have the goods and will just go away or, like most, it will end in a settlement where nobody actually admits fault, so this lawsuit will accomplish nothing but raising future prices on WN flights to pay for it. If we're gonna blow all this money, let's blow it on actually fixing something, which this particular suit will not.

It's not a pro/con anybody argument, its my general hatred of class action lawsuits here in the US hat just add cost to businesses and accomplish nothing but buying the lawyer a bigger boat.
 
757223
Posts: 78
Joined: Thu Mar 10, 2005 2:59 pm

Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Thu May 19, 2022 5:54 pm

AMALH747430 wrote:
I generally agree with the assessment of how these types of lawsuits originate. However, every once in a while something gets uncovered through the civil discovery process in a lawsuit.

I think the Max is a safe airplane after the modifications. However, fixing the problem and getting to the bottom of why it happened are two different things.

The “fixing” part of the equation has been solved. However, I don’t think we’ve completely uncovered the why and how this happened. In the not too distant past we learned that had Sally Ride not passed on some o ring temperature data to General Kutyna, the Rogers Commission may not have uncovered how long NASA knew about the O ring issue with the Space Shuttle that led to the Challenger disaster. If Rick Parks hadn’t gone public with the flawed cleanup plan at Three Mile Island, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission would have rubber stamped Bechtel Corporation’s plan to use a damaged crane to lift wreckage out of the reactor building and people would have been put at risk. This is a lawsuit, not a whistleblower report, but sometimes lawsuits uncover the same sorts of things.

This was the second time Boeing got caught flat footed in the narrow body market and warmed over a 1960’s regional jet that was past it’s prime. it’s also the second time Boeing made decisions to keep it’s biggest customer of the type happy by designing the cockpit and systems so that a pilot certified to fly the older versions could fly this one. It worked out the first time (NG), not so much on the Max. Boeing was in a bad way when Airbus announced the NEO. They got caught off guard and were desperate to answer. They also knew that they’re buggiest customer for the type had to buy in.

Southwest also isn’t “Herb’s Little Airline” anymore. That became apparent in 2008 when the FAA levied a $10.2 million (reduced to $7.5 million) for safety violations. Does this mean Southwest is unsafe? No, I’d say they’re not more or less safe than any other US major. They’re just not “special.” They exist to maximize shareholder value and they’ll do what they have to in order to make that happen. There’s nothing wrong with that unless it compromises safety. We know that WN’s mantra has been “single pilot pool” for a long time. They don’t want to give that up. Did that mentality cause mistakes to be made? We’ll have to see where this leads to find out.

This lawsuit may just be a money grab. It may uncover more of the story of how the Max came to become what it did. Until it plays out we won’t know. I’m not willing to just dismiss it as a money grab until more of the story comes out though.

zuckie13 wrote:
Vicenza wrote:

All of that is merely quite an assumption on your part. Can you factually support anything at all in it?


I can support it based on the history of class action lawsuits in this country. This type of lawsuit, not led by a victim with clear obvious damages, but by "victims" the lawyers who wanted to bring the lawsuit found (they'll have a few named plaintiffs who will get extra money of course) to sue on behalf of. In the end either it'll end up they don't have the goods and will just go away or, like most, it will end in a settlement where nobody actually admits fault, so this lawsuit will accomplish nothing but raising future prices on WN flights to pay for it. If we're gonna blow all this money, let's blow it on actually fixing something, which this particular suit will not.

It's not a pro/con anybody argument, its my general hatred of class action lawsuits here in the US hat just add cost to businesses and accomplish nothing but buying the lawyer a bigger boat.


Very well said.
 
mcdu
Posts: 1749
Joined: Thu Apr 28, 2005 5:23 am

Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Thu May 19, 2022 6:10 pm

Where would Boeing be now if they had not accepted the pressure from Southwest to keep the 737 a 1960's airplane. If Boeing had looked at the long game versus the short and saw the need for even a simple EICAS system in the development of the NG and the MAX they would perhaps not be in the position they are today. With the looming EICAS legislation possibly affecting the -10, Boeing may kill the 737 from bowing to the desires of a low cost carrier. Southwest touts itself as a leader in low cost and they don't equate that with low fares. Skipping training and putting the initial training burden on new pilots versus the company has saved them millions over the years. However, that type of cost cutting does have a long term affect.
 
User avatar
keesje
Topic Author
Posts: 15043
Joined: Thu Apr 12, 2001 2:08 am

Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Thu May 19, 2022 6:38 pm

757223 wrote:
AMALH747430 wrote:
I generally agree with the assessment of how these types of lawsuits originate. However, every once in a while something gets uncovered through the civil discovery process in a lawsuit.

I think the Max is a safe airplane after the modifications. However, fixing the problem and getting to the bottom of why it happened are two different things.

The “fixing” part of the equation has been solved. However, I don’t think we’ve completely uncovered the why and how this happened. In the not too distant past we learned that had Sally Ride not passed on some o ring temperature data to General Kutyna, the Rogers Commission may not have uncovered how long NASA knew about the O ring issue with the Space Shuttle that led to the Challenger disaster. If Rick Parks hadn’t gone public with the flawed cleanup plan at Three Mile Island, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission would have rubber stamped Bechtel Corporation’s plan to use a damaged crane to lift wreckage out of the reactor building and people would have been put at risk. This is a lawsuit, not a whistleblower report, but sometimes lawsuits uncover the same sorts of things.

This was the second time Boeing got caught flat footed in the narrow body market and warmed over a 1960’s regional jet that was past it’s prime. it’s also the second time Boeing made decisions to keep it’s biggest customer of the type happy by designing the cockpit and systems so that a pilot certified to fly the older versions could fly this one. It worked out the first time (NG), not so much on the Max. Boeing was in a bad way when Airbus announced the NEO. They got caught off guard and were desperate to answer. They also knew that they’re buggiest customer for the type had to buy in.

Southwest also isn’t “Herb’s Little Airline” anymore. That became apparent in 2008 when the FAA levied a $10.2 million (reduced to $7.5 million) for safety violations. Does this mean Southwest is unsafe? No, I’d say they’re not more or less safe than any other US major. They’re just not “special.” They exist to maximize shareholder value and they’ll do what they have to in order to make that happen. There’s nothing wrong with that unless it compromises safety. We know that WN’s mantra has been “single pilot pool” for a long time. They don’t want to give that up. Did that mentality cause mistakes to be made? We’ll have to see where this leads to find out.

This lawsuit may just be a money grab. It may uncover more of the story of how the Max came to become what it did. Until it plays out we won’t know. I’m not willing to just dismiss it as a money grab until more of the story comes out though.

zuckie13 wrote:

I can support it based on the history of class action lawsuits in this country. This type of lawsuit, not led by a victim with clear obvious damages, but by "victims" the lawyers who wanted to bring the lawsuit found (they'll have a few named plaintiffs who will get extra money of course) to sue on behalf of. In the end either it'll end up they don't have the goods and will just go away or, like most, it will end in a settlement where nobody actually admits fault, so this lawsuit will accomplish nothing but raising future prices on WN flights to pay for it. If we're gonna blow all this money, let's blow it on actually fixing something, which this particular suit will not.

It's not a pro/con anybody argument, its my general hatred of class action lawsuits here in the US hat just add cost to businesses and accomplish nothing but buying the lawyer a bigger boat.


Very well said.


Oh, I thought it's just about Boeing trying to prevent doing a safety mod on the 737 replacing a decades old system. And SW the accompaning crew training.

"If you can't convince them, confuse them"
 
BoeingGuy
Posts: 6904
Joined: Fri Dec 10, 2010 6:01 pm

Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Thu May 19, 2022 7:33 pm

mcdu wrote:
Where would Boeing be now if they had not accepted the pressure from Southwest to keep the 737 a 1960's airplane. If Boeing had looked at the long game versus the short and saw the need for even a simple EICAS system in the development of the NG and the MAX they would perhaps not be in the position they are today. With the looming EICAS legislation possibly affecting the -10, Boeing may kill the 737 from bowing to the desires of a low cost carrier. Southwest touts itself as a leader in low cost and they don't equate that with low fares. Skipping training and putting the initial training burden on new pilots versus the company has saved them millions over the years. However, that type of cost cutting does have a long term affect.


I don’t understand this constant vendetta against Southwest. Similar to Rick Ludtke’s bitterness towards Boeing because he got laid off. I clearly explained the situation earlier. This issue never happened nor did it compromise safety.

Southwest Airlines has been flying for 51 years. They have had exactly one passenger fatality, and that was due to an uncontained engine failure. There was also one ground fatality at MDW.

Two too many, but still by far the best safety record of any US carrier that has been around that long.

I’m sure WN has made mistakes and has weaknesses just like all of us. But the statistics don’t support the constant WN bashing.
 
BoeingGuy
Posts: 6904
Joined: Fri Dec 10, 2010 6:01 pm

Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Thu May 19, 2022 7:36 pm

keesje wrote:
757223 wrote:
AMALH747430 wrote:
I generally agree with the assessment of how these types of lawsuits originate. However, every once in a while something gets uncovered through the civil discovery process in a lawsuit.

I think the Max is a safe airplane after the modifications. However, fixing the problem and getting to the bottom of why it happened are two different things.

The “fixing” part of the equation has been solved. However, I don’t think we’ve completely uncovered the why and how this happened. In the not too distant past we learned that had Sally Ride not passed on some o ring temperature data to General Kutyna, the Rogers Commission may not have uncovered how long NASA knew about the O ring issue with the Space Shuttle that led to the Challenger disaster. If Rick Parks hadn’t gone public with the flawed cleanup plan at Three Mile Island, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission would have rubber stamped Bechtel Corporation’s plan to use a damaged crane to lift wreckage out of the reactor building and people would have been put at risk. This is a lawsuit, not a whistleblower report, but sometimes lawsuits uncover the same sorts of things.

This was the second time Boeing got caught flat footed in the narrow body market and warmed over a 1960’s regional jet that was past it’s prime. it’s also the second time Boeing made decisions to keep it’s biggest customer of the type happy by designing the cockpit and systems so that a pilot certified to fly the older versions could fly this one. It worked out the first time (NG), not so much on the Max. Boeing was in a bad way when Airbus announced the NEO. They got caught off guard and were desperate to answer. They also knew that they’re buggiest customer for the type had to buy in.

Southwest also isn’t “Herb’s Little Airline” anymore. That became apparent in 2008 when the FAA levied a $10.2 million (reduced to $7.5 million) for safety violations. Does this mean Southwest is unsafe? No, I’d say they’re not more or less safe than any other US major. They’re just not “special.” They exist to maximize shareholder value and they’ll do what they have to in order to make that happen. There’s nothing wrong with that unless it compromises safety. We know that WN’s mantra has been “single pilot pool” for a long time. They don’t want to give that up. Did that mentality cause mistakes to be made? We’ll have to see where this leads to find out.

This lawsuit may just be a money grab. It may uncover more of the story of how the Max came to become what it did. Until it plays out we won’t know. I’m not willing to just dismiss it as a money grab until more of the story comes out though.



Very well said.


Oh, I thought it's just about Boeing trying to prevent doing a safety mod on the 737 replacing a decades old system. And SW the accompaning crew training.

"If you can't convince them, confuse them"


Read my previous explanation. RCAS is a safety enhancement and is on every 737 MAX.

It is completely incorrect that Boeing avoided a safety mod. They implemented one. The only “confuse them” is Dominic Gates’ very misleading biased reporting.

I’m no fan of Boeing leadership, but some of this stuff gets misreported and overdramatized.
 
zuckie13
Posts: 522
Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2018 8:23 pm

Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Thu May 19, 2022 7:39 pm

AMALH747430 wrote:
I generally agree with the assessment of how these types of lawsuits originate. However, every once in a while something gets uncovered through the civil discovery process in a lawsuit.

I think the Max is a safe airplane after the modifications. However, fixing the problem and getting to the bottom of why it happened are two different things.

The “fixing” part of the equation has been solved. However, I don’t think we’ve completely uncovered the why and how this happened. In the not too distant past we learned that had Sally Ride not passed on some o ring temperature data to General Kutyna, the Rogers Commission may not have uncovered how long NASA knew about the O ring issue with the Space Shuttle that led to the Challenger disaster. If Rick Parks hadn’t gone public with the flawed cleanup plan at Three Mile Island, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission would have rubber stamped Bechtel Corporation’s plan to use a damaged crane to lift wreckage out of the reactor building and people would have been put at risk. This is a lawsuit, not a whistleblower report, but sometimes lawsuits uncover the same sorts of things.

This was the second time Boeing got caught flat footed in the narrow body market and warmed over a 1960’s regional jet that was past it’s prime. it’s also the second time Boeing made decisions to keep it’s biggest customer of the type happy by designing the cockpit and systems so that a pilot certified to fly the older versions could fly this one. It worked out the first time (NG), not so much on the Max. Boeing was in a bad way when Airbus announced the NEO. They got caught off guard and were desperate to answer. They also knew that they’re buggiest customer for the type had to buy in.

Southwest also isn’t “Herb’s Little Airline” anymore. That became apparent in 2008 when the FAA levied a $10.2 million (reduced to $7.5 million) for safety violations. Does this mean Southwest is unsafe? No, I’d say they’re not more or less safe than any other US major. They’re just not “special.” They exist to maximize shareholder value and they’ll do what they have to in order to make that happen. There’s nothing wrong with that unless it compromises safety. We know that WN’s mantra has been “single pilot pool” for a long time. They don’t want to give that up. Did that mentality cause mistakes to be made? We’ll have to see where this leads to find out.

This lawsuit may just be a money grab. It may uncover more of the story of how the Max came to become what it did. Until it plays out we won’t know. I’m not willing to just dismiss it as a money grab until more of the story comes out though.

zuckie13 wrote:
Vicenza wrote:

All of that is merely quite an assumption on your part. Can you factually support anything at all in it?


I can support it based on the history of class action lawsuits in this country. This type of lawsuit, not led by a victim with clear obvious damages, but by "victims" the lawyers who wanted to bring the lawsuit found (they'll have a few named plaintiffs who will get extra money of course) to sue on behalf of. In the end either it'll end up they don't have the goods and will just go away or, like most, it will end in a settlement where nobody actually admits fault, so this lawsuit will accomplish nothing but raising future prices on WN flights to pay for it. If we're gonna blow all this money, let's blow it on actually fixing something, which this particular suit will not.

It's not a pro/con anybody argument, its my general hatred of class action lawsuits here in the US hat just add cost to businesses and accomplish nothing but buying the lawyer a bigger boat.


So basically, we don't trust either our regulators, or our congress to do their jobs and get to the bottom of something, so let the self serving class action lawyers do it for them?

There does need to be more investigation into this to prevent this from happening again. No argument there, but this is not a complete investigation, this is dig enough to find something and get a settlement. The details are not guaranteed to come out in a lawsuit like this because of the aforementioned settle and don't admit guild ending that is the most likely outcome.

If this purpose is to actually improve safety - this just isn't the answer.
 
BoeingGuy
Posts: 6904
Joined: Fri Dec 10, 2010 6:01 pm

Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Thu May 19, 2022 7:46 pm

zuckie13 wrote:
AMALH747430 wrote:
I generally agree with the assessment of how these types of lawsuits originate. However, every once in a while something gets uncovered through the civil discovery process in a lawsuit.

I think the Max is a safe airplane after the modifications. However, fixing the problem and getting to the bottom of why it happened are two different things.

The “fixing” part of the equation has been solved. However, I don’t think we’ve completely uncovered the why and how this happened. In the not too distant past we learned that had Sally Ride not passed on some o ring temperature data to General Kutyna, the Rogers Commission may not have uncovered how long NASA knew about the O ring issue with the Space Shuttle that led to the Challenger disaster. If Rick Parks hadn’t gone public with the flawed cleanup plan at Three Mile Island, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission would have rubber stamped Bechtel Corporation’s plan to use a damaged crane to lift wreckage out of the reactor building and people would have been put at risk. This is a lawsuit, not a whistleblower report, but sometimes lawsuits uncover the same sorts of things.

This was the second time Boeing got caught flat footed in the narrow body market and warmed over a 1960’s regional jet that was past it’s prime. it’s also the second time Boeing made decisions to keep it’s biggest customer of the type happy by designing the cockpit and systems so that a pilot certified to fly the older versions could fly this one. It worked out the first time (NG), not so much on the Max. Boeing was in a bad way when Airbus announced the NEO. They got caught off guard and were desperate to answer. They also knew that they’re buggiest customer for the type had to buy in.

Southwest also isn’t “Herb’s Little Airline” anymore. That became apparent in 2008 when the FAA levied a $10.2 million (reduced to $7.5 million) for safety violations. Does this mean Southwest is unsafe? No, I’d say they’re not more or less safe than any other US major. They’re just not “special.” They exist to maximize shareholder value and they’ll do what they have to in order to make that happen. There’s nothing wrong with that unless it compromises safety. We know that WN’s mantra has been “single pilot pool” for a long time. They don’t want to give that up. Did that mentality cause mistakes to be made? We’ll have to see where this leads to find out.

This lawsuit may just be a money grab. It may uncover more of the story of how the Max came to become what it did. Until it plays out we won’t know. I’m not willing to just dismiss it as a money grab until more of the story comes out though.

zuckie13 wrote:

I can support it based on the history of class action lawsuits in this country. This type of lawsuit, not led by a victim with clear obvious damages, but by "victims" the lawyers who wanted to bring the lawsuit found (they'll have a few named plaintiffs who will get extra money of course) to sue on behalf of. In the end either it'll end up they don't have the goods and will just go away or, like most, it will end in a settlement where nobody actually admits fault, so this lawsuit will accomplish nothing but raising future prices on WN flights to pay for it. If we're gonna blow all this money, let's blow it on actually fixing something, which this particular suit will not.

It's not a pro/con anybody argument, its my general hatred of class action lawsuits here in the US hat just add cost to businesses and accomplish nothing but buying the lawyer a bigger boat.


So basically, we don't trust either our regulators, or our congress to do their jobs and get to the bottom of something, so let the self serving class action lawyers do it for them?

There does need to be more investigation into this to prevent this from happening again. No argument there, but this is not a complete investigation, this is dig enough to find something and get a settlement. The details are not guaranteed to come out in a lawsuit like this because of the aforementioned settle and don't admit guild ending that is the most likely outcome.

If this purpose is to actually improve safety - this just isn't the answer.


There is so much misinformation and misunderstanding of the issue in so many of these replies.
 
AMALH747430
Posts: 302
Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2014 9:29 pm

Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Fri May 20, 2022 12:05 am

zuckie13 wrote:
AMALH747430 wrote:
I generally agree with the assessment of how these types of lawsuits originate. However, every once in a while something gets uncovered through the civil discovery process in a lawsuit.

I think the Max is a safe airplane after the modifications. However, fixing the problem and getting to the bottom of why it happened are two different things.

The “fixing” part of the equation has been solved. However, I don’t think we’ve completely uncovered the why and how this happened. In the not too distant past we learned that had Sally Ride not passed on some o ring temperature data to General Kutyna, the Rogers Commission may not have uncovered how long NASA knew about the O ring issue with the Space Shuttle that led to the Challenger disaster. If Rick Parks hadn’t gone public with the flawed cleanup plan at Three Mile Island, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission would have rubber stamped Bechtel Corporation’s plan to use a damaged crane to lift wreckage out of the reactor building and people would have been put at risk. This is a lawsuit, not a whistleblower report, but sometimes lawsuits uncover the same sorts of things.

This was the second time Boeing got caught flat footed in the narrow body market and warmed over a 1960’s regional jet that was past it’s prime. it’s also the second time Boeing made decisions to keep it’s biggest customer of the type happy by designing the cockpit and systems so that a pilot certified to fly the older versions could fly this one. It worked out the first time (NG), not so much on the Max. Boeing was in a bad way when Airbus announced the NEO. They got caught off guard and were desperate to answer. They also knew that they’re buggiest customer for the type had to buy in.

Southwest also isn’t “Herb’s Little Airline” anymore. That became apparent in 2008 when the FAA levied a $10.2 million (reduced to $7.5 million) for safety violations. Does this mean Southwest is unsafe? No, I’d say they’re not more or less safe than any other US major. They’re just not “special.” They exist to maximize shareholder value and they’ll do what they have to in order to make that happen. There’s nothing wrong with that unless it compromises safety. We know that WN’s mantra has been “single pilot pool” for a long time. They don’t want to give that up. Did that mentality cause mistakes to be made? We’ll have to see where this leads to find out.

This lawsuit may just be a money grab. It may uncover more of the story of how the Max came to become what it did. Until it plays out we won’t know. I’m not willing to just dismiss it as a money grab until more of the story comes out though.

zuckie13 wrote:

I can support it based on the history of class action lawsuits in this country. This type of lawsuit, not led by a victim with clear obvious damages, but by "victims" the lawyers who wanted to bring the lawsuit found (they'll have a few named plaintiffs who will get extra money of course) to sue on behalf of. In the end either it'll end up they don't have the goods and will just go away or, like most, it will end in a settlement where nobody actually admits fault, so this lawsuit will accomplish nothing but raising future prices on WN flights to pay for it. If we're gonna blow all this money, let's blow it on actually fixing something, which this particular suit will not.

It's not a pro/con anybody argument, its my general hatred of class action lawsuits here in the US hat just add cost to businesses and accomplish nothing but buying the lawyer a bigger boat.


So basically, we don't trust either our regulators, or our congress to do their jobs and get to the bottom of something, so let the self serving class action lawyers do it for them?

There does need to be more investigation into this to prevent this from happening again. No argument there, but this is not a complete investigation, this is dig enough to find something and get a settlement. The details are not guaranteed to come out in a lawsuit like this because of the aforementioned settle and don't admit guild ending that is the most likely outcome.

If this purpose is to actually improve safety - this just isn't the answer.


The regulators failed when it came to the Max. Period. Do regulators always fail? No, but they did here. Are lawsuits a substitute for regulators? No. I’m simply saying that sometimes the discovery process on lawsuits uncovers things.

I’m also not questioning the safety of the Max as it exists today. I am saying that there is likely more to this story and this suit might uncover it. Southwest has had influenced the evolution of the 737 more than any other airline. It looks like evidence that they influenced the design of the Max to the detriment of safety may exist. We may find out through the discovery process. It needs to play out.

I don’t have a vendetta against Southwest. I’ve flown many many miles on Southwest going back to the mid 1990s. They’re a good airline but they’re not infallible.
 
kiowa
Posts: 955
Joined: Wed Jun 08, 2011 12:37 am

Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Fri May 20, 2022 2:27 am

AMALH747430 wrote:
zuckie13 wrote:
AMALH747430 wrote:
I generally agree with the assessment of how these types of lawsuits originate. However, every once in a while something gets uncovered through the civil discovery process in a lawsuit.

I think the Max is a safe airplane after the modifications. However, fixing the problem and getting to the bottom of why it happened are two different things.

The “fixing” part of the equation has been solved. However, I don’t think we’ve completely uncovered the why and how this happened. In the not too distant past we learned that had Sally Ride not passed on some o ring temperature data to General Kutyna, the Rogers Commission may not have uncovered how long NASA knew about the O ring issue with the Space Shuttle that led to the Challenger disaster. If Rick Parks hadn’t gone public with the flawed cleanup plan at Three Mile Island, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission would have rubber stamped Bechtel Corporation’s plan to use a damaged crane to lift wreckage out of the reactor building and people would have been put at risk. This is a lawsuit, not a whistleblower report, but sometimes lawsuits uncover the same sorts of things.

This was the second time Boeing got caught flat footed in the narrow body market and warmed over a 1960’s regional jet that was past it’s prime. it’s also the second time Boeing made decisions to keep it’s biggest customer of the type happy by designing the cockpit and systems so that a pilot certified to fly the older versions could fly this one. It worked out the first time (NG), not so much on the Max. Boeing was in a bad way when Airbus announced the NEO. They got caught off guard and were desperate to answer. They also knew that they’re buggiest customer for the type had to buy in.

Southwest also isn’t “Herb’s Little Airline” anymore. That became apparent in 2008 when the FAA levied a $10.2 million (reduced to $7.5 million) for safety violations. Does this mean Southwest is unsafe? No, I’d say they’re not more or less safe than any other US major. They’re just not “special.” They exist to maximize shareholder value and they’ll do what they have to in order to make that happen. There’s nothing wrong with that unless it compromises safety. We know that WN’s mantra has been “single pilot pool” for a long time. They don’t want to give that up. Did that mentality cause mistakes to be made? We’ll have to see where this leads to find out.

This lawsuit may just be a money grab. It may uncover more of the story of how the Max came to become what it did. Until it plays out we won’t know. I’m not willing to just dismiss it as a money grab until more of the story comes out though.



So basically, we don't trust either our regulators, or our congress to do their jobs and get to the bottom of something, so let the self serving class action lawyers do it for them?

There does need to be more investigation into this to prevent this from happening again. No argument there, but this is not a complete investigation, this is dig enough to find something and get a settlement. The details are not guaranteed to come out in a lawsuit like this because of the aforementioned settle and don't admit guild ending that is the most likely outcome.

If this purpose is to actually improve safety - this just isn't the answer.


The regulators failed when it came to the Max. Period. Do regulators always fail? No, but they did here. Are lawsuits a substitute for regulators? No. I’m simply saying that sometimes the discovery process on lawsuits uncovers things.

I’m also not questioning the safety of the Max as it exists today. I am saying that there is likely more to this story and this suit might uncover it. Southwest has had influenced the evolution of the 737 more than any other airline. It looks like evidence that they influenced the design of the Max to the detriment of safety may exist. We may find out through the discovery process. It needs to play out.

I don’t have a vendetta against Southwest. I’ve flown many many miles on Southwest going back to the mid 1990s. They’re a good airline but they’re not infallible.


The regulators are not the only guilty ones although they will probably not see the legal action that the airlines and Boeing will.
 
User avatar
Pythagoras
Posts: 273
Joined: Sun Oct 04, 2020 12:33 am

Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Fri May 20, 2022 2:11 pm

Avatar2go wrote:
As discussed earlier, the SW contract clause containing penalties for simulation training is common language. That was widely reported at the time it became public knowledge.

As far as the MCAS fix, that actually was done in 6 weeks. The longer software rewrite was to address another issue, that had a very remote probability but could have resulted in a similar kind of accident. No one saw that coming, but the FAA required it out of an abundance of caution.


This comment is in reference to the risk for a flipped bit due to cosmic ray radiation.

The FAA would have had to knowingly violate the rules, which would have put itself at risk for litigation. If one is making a design change to meet a regulation, the design change needs to be certifiable to the regulations.

Now Boeing could have asked for a finding of equivalent safety and not made the change but imagine how that would have played out in the press and before congressional committees for both Boeing and the FAA.
 
mcdu
Posts: 1749
Joined: Thu Apr 28, 2005 5:23 am

Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Fri May 20, 2022 5:01 pm

BoeingGuy wrote:
mcdu wrote:
Where would Boeing be now if they had not accepted the pressure from Southwest to keep the 737 a 1960's airplane. If Boeing had looked at the long game versus the short and saw the need for even a simple EICAS system in the development of the NG and the MAX they would perhaps not be in the position they are today. With the looming EICAS legislation possibly affecting the -10, Boeing may kill the 737 from bowing to the desires of a low cost carrier. Southwest touts itself as a leader in low cost and they don't equate that with low fares. Skipping training and putting the initial training burden on new pilots versus the company has saved them millions over the years. However, that type of cost cutting does have a long term affect.


I don’t understand this constant vendetta against Southwest. Similar to Rick Ludtke’s bitterness towards Boeing because he got laid off. I clearly explained the situation earlier. This issue never happened nor did it compromise safety.

Southwest Airlines has been flying for 51 years. They have had exactly one passenger fatality, and that was due to an uncontained engine failure. There was also one ground fatality at MDW.

Two too many, but still by far the best safety record of any US carrier that has been around that long.

I’m sure WN has made mistakes and has weaknesses just like all of us. But the statistics don’t support the constant WN bashing.


Criticism is not a vendetta when rooted in facts. Boeing holds culpability in what has become of the company. They bowed to demands from their largest 737 customer and shirked their corporate responsibility on safety. The allegations that the largest operator nudged Boeing to do things in an underhanded way to prevent training costs is very plausible. Especially based on the facts of that company’s previous actions regarding safety and expenses.
 
BoeingGuy
Posts: 6904
Joined: Fri Dec 10, 2010 6:01 pm

Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Fri May 20, 2022 5:16 pm

mcdu wrote:
BoeingGuy wrote:
mcdu wrote:
Where would Boeing be now if they had not accepted the pressure from Southwest to keep the 737 a 1960's airplane. If Boeing had looked at the long game versus the short and saw the need for even a simple EICAS system in the development of the NG and the MAX they would perhaps not be in the position they are today. With the looming EICAS legislation possibly affecting the -10, Boeing may kill the 737 from bowing to the desires of a low cost carrier. Southwest touts itself as a leader in low cost and they don't equate that with low fares. Skipping training and putting the initial training burden on new pilots versus the company has saved them millions over the years. However, that type of cost cutting does have a long term affect.


I don’t understand this constant vendetta against Southwest. Similar to Rick Ludtke’s bitterness towards Boeing because he got laid off. I clearly explained the situation earlier. This issue never happened nor did it compromise safety.

Southwest Airlines has been flying for 51 years. They have had exactly one passenger fatality, and that was due to an uncontained engine failure. There was also one ground fatality at MDW.

Two too many, but still by far the best safety record of any US carrier that has been around that long.

I’m sure WN has made mistakes and has weaknesses just like all of us. But the statistics don’t support the constant WN bashing.


Criticism is not a vendetta when rooted in facts. Boeing holds culpability in what has become of the company. They bowed to demands from their largest 737 customer and shirked their corporate responsibility on safety. The allegations that the largest operator nudged Boeing to do things in an underhanded way to prevent training costs is very plausible. Especially based on the facts of that company’s previous actions regarding safety and expenses.


I had some involvement in RCAS. I never heard of any such thing. You have a “whistle blower” who is bitter about Boeing because he got laid off, going out and talking to the media all the time. Mr. Ludtke did a good job implementing RCAS, but was one of only a few selected in his group when layoffs occurred. We’ll leave it at that.

I can’t speak whether someone suggested it and I didn’t hear about, but I can state the fact that Boeing never did any such thing. Boeing never retrofitted RCAS on only one 737 NG in order to mislead anyone.
 
Canuck600
Posts: 393
Joined: Tue Aug 01, 2017 5:24 pm

Re: Seattle Times 16 May : Deep SouthWest Airlines Involvement Certification Boeing MAX Safety Alert to avoid Training

Fri May 20, 2022 5:23 pm

This is just a question for the sake of curiosity if it's conclusively found that Southwest influenced discussions on how the Max was designed could they be found liable in the two accidents when it comes to awarding damages?

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