Boeing problems, the FAA...

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raspberry-blower
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Boeing problems, the FAA...

Post by raspberry-blower »

Following the two fatal air crashes in the space of five months, that claimed the lives of 346 people, all Boeing 737 Max aircraft have been grounded
Source

Boeing's problems are not confined to just this.
Today, Zero Hedge reported that a Boeing 767 from Beijing to Seattle had to turn round due to a technical failure
Normally, this would be a "so what" article however, only last month, a Boeing 767 converted for air freight crashed killing all 3 on board.

A couple of interesting articles first up on the corporate culture:
Naked Capitalism: Boeing crapification: a second 737 Max crashes just after take off in 5 months

Then some serious questions about the role of the FAA:
Moon of Alabama: Boeing, the FAA and why two 737 Max planes crashed

Then there is the Al Jazeera expose of yet another problem plagued Boeing aircraft, the 787 Dreamliner.
Broken Dreams: The story of the 787 Dreamliner
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BritDownUnder
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Post by BritDownUnder »

Perhaps President Trump had a moment of clarity when he said that modern aircraft are too complex to fly. With thoughts of Tainter and his Collapse of Complex Civilizations book perhaps it is a warning about how complex all things in our lives are getting.

I understand that most aircraft now are unflyable by direct human control and are in fact inherently unstable as it makes them a bit more economic and efficient (perhaps at getting you into the graveyard). The most terrifying flight I had was in a Boeing 717 (I had to look that one up as I had never heard of it either) flight to a mine site in Western Australia and was right next to the engine (which was at the back of the aircraft near the tail) and it, and it's twin on the other side throbbed with a low frequency vibration throughout the whole trip.
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Post by vtsnowedin »

Being a cynic that does not believe in coincidences these two crashes are more then enough to justify grounding these planes until they find the true cause and correct it. Not grounding them would be criminal considering the odds of another crash.
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Post by PS_RalphW »

Having worked at the (then) Royal Aerospace Establishment developing and testing very a early digital autopilot bolted on to a 1960s BAC111. We had military test pilots, and full physical link dual controls, and a large red button in the middle marked 'OFF'. However, the software certification was 'If you wrote it , you fly it', along with a form signing away all rights in the event of your death...

The red button got used more than once. I would be very nervous being flown in a machine that is aerodynamically unstable without electromechanical controls to the cockpit. However, I have taken 2 (return) flights in the last decade.
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Re: Boeing problems, the FAA...

Post by UndercoverElephant »

raspberry-blower wrote:
Then some serious questions about the role of the FAA:
Moon of Alabama: Boeing, the FAA and why two 737 Max planes crashed
If that is true then Boeing's reputation has just been shredded. Clear example of putting profit above safety, which is unthinkable in this industry.
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adam2
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Post by adam2 »

I avoid air travel due to the environmental costs and have not flown for at least 20 years.

Note that my concerns are environmental and not due to the risks. Despite the current concerns about this particular aircraft type, air travel remains very safe, and MUCH safer than walking, cycling, or driving.

I consider that cover ups and corruption over air safety are likely, but the fact remains that huge numbers of people fly and that the risks are minimal.

A few hundred killed in an air crash is major news, a few thousand killed on the roads is normal and not worth reporting.

Edited for accuracy. In fact I last flew in the year 2000, so 18 or 19 years ago and not 20 as initially said. It was not long after the rail accident at Hatfield and consequent major rail disruption.
I got a lift in a light aeroplane from London to Somerset as the trains were so bad.
Prior to that I flew very little.
Last edited by adam2 on Thu Mar 14, 2019 4:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by emordnilap »

I’ve used a plane thrice in my life and I regret those times. Hopefully, no more for me in my lifetime.
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UndercoverElephant
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Post by UndercoverElephant »

adam2 wrote:I avoid air travel due to the environmental costs and have not flown for at least 20 years.

Note that my concerns are environmental and not due to the risks. Despite the current concerns about this particular aircraft type, air travel remains very safe, and MUCH safer than walking, cycling, or driving.
I worked as a software engineer in the flight simulator industry for 15 years, including on 737 simulators. I could just about fly one.

I also no not fly anymore (although I have done so far more times than I'd like to have done, mainly on the business of installing and maintaining the damned things), both because of the environmental concerns and the risks.
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Post by raspberry-blower »

The Ethiopia Airlines black box has gone to France for analysing not the USA

source
A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools - Douglas Adams.
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Post by Little John »

I flew once on a budget airline to France. We had to land virtually sideways because of a cross wind.

I have never flown since.
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Post by kenneal - lagger »

Little John wrote:I flew once on a budget airline to France. We had to land virtually sideways because of a cross wind.

I have never flown since.
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raspberry-blower
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Post by raspberry-blower »

The preliminary report into the Ethiopia Airlines crash can be found here
A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools - Douglas Adams.
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Post by kenneal - lagger »

According to today's Observer the plane was modified by Boeing with larger more fuel efficient engines in response to loss of sales to American Airlines who bought a large number of more economical European aircraft. Modifying the aircraft was quicker and cheaper than building a new one. The larger heavier engines caused the planes to fly more nose up so the electronics were introduced to counter this tendency to stall. Because the aircraft was only modified and not new the FAA allowed it to fly with little or no testing. Trumps deregulation and hollowing out of the FAA also contributed.
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Post by clv101 »

Indeed, that's what the Moon of Alabama article above from a few weeks ago said. It's turned out to be impressively right.
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Post by raspberry-blower »

Further update from Moon of Alabama: Ethiopia crash: Boeing and FAA advice to 737 Max pilots was insufficient and flawed

A poster on the comments section, Karloff1 posted a link to an article authored by Ralf Nader:

Ralf Nader: The Boeing 737 Max must never fly again
Ralf Nader wrote: The overriding problem is the basic unstable design of the 737 Max. An aircraft has to be stall proof not stall prone. An aircraft manufacturer like Boeing, notwithstanding its past safety record, is not entitled to more aircraft disasters that are preventable by following long-established aeronautical engineering practices and standards.
I believe that Mr Nader lost a niece in the Ethiopia Airlines disaster - it is no wonder he is so angry.

Latest info on the Boeing 737 Max is that the plane will be grounded for between 6 - 8 months. Source
A 6-8 month grounding of the 737, Boeing’s cash cow which accounts for about 40% of The Boeing Co’s profits, will be devastating.

Just how bad this could be might be revealed on Boeing’s first quarter earnings call April 24.
These results are going to be very heavily scrutinised
A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools - Douglas Adams.
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