Boeing has announced that it plans to cut back on production of the 737 MAX aircraft after two fatal crashes revealed similar mechanical problems. But as the company faces the first of what could turn into hundreds of lawsuits, it stock continues to fall.
Boeing’s troubles don’t appear to be ending anytime soon, and they now include a lack of trust from the public, and a lack of confidence from investors. Following the release of a preliminary report from the investigation, Boeing’s CEO, Dennis Muilenburg, is now admitting that the flight control system on the 737 Max had significant problems that led to the fatal crashes.
“The full details of what happened in the two accidents will be issued by the government authorities in the final reports, but, with the release of the preliminary report of the Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 accident investigation, it’s apparent that in both flights the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System, known as MCAS, activated in response to erroneous angle of attack information,” Muilenburg said.
The report from last month’s crash in Ethiopia shows that the crew on board followed all of the instructions from Boeing, and did everything in their power to prevent the plane from crashing, but they were not able to overcome its mechanical problems.
Boeing officials have claimed that they are working to update the plane’s software to ensure that the problem is corrected. Until those updates are approved and verified by aviation authorities, Boeing plans to cut back on production of the 737 MAX, starting this month.
But it should be noted that instead of producing 52 jets per month, Boeing plans to produce 42—a small decrease that has left many with questions about whether Boeing is doing enough.
The company’s standards have also been called into question after reports revealed that the planes involved in the deadly crashes lacked key features that could have helped the crew when the flight system started malfunctioning.Both an angle of attack indicator and disagree light, which would have alerted the crew to problems with the plane’s censors, were not included because Boeing charged extra, and because they were not required by aviation authorities.
The families of the nearly 350 victims who were killed in the crashes are now left with countless questions. They have started to file lawsuits against Boeing, arguing that the company should have done more to prevent these deadly crashes.
Boeing is also facing problems financially, and its stock dropped nearly 4 percent in early trading on Monday, in response to the CEO’s statements on the crashes.
With a decrease in production, a number of lengthy and costly lawsuits, and a lack of trust from the public, Boeing could be facing an uncertain future, as hundreds of grieving families struggle to move forward with very few answers.