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Criminal, civil investigation into 737 MAX production issues

written by Sandy Milne | April 29, 2020

737 MAX 7
The 737 MAX 7 completed a successful first flight today. The airplane is seen here during its flight. (Source: Boeing)

Boeing may face criminal and civil scrutiny into the beleaguered 737 MAX line, according to numerous overnight reports.

The Wall Street Journal suggests a full-scale federal grand-jury investigation by Justice Department prosecutors and the FAA could soon be on the way. It follows private lawsuits already levelled against the aviation giant in Illinois regarding the Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines crashes that grounded the popular jet.

On Tuesday, it was reported that a grand jury probe has been commissioned into the aircraft’s problematic flight control systems.

Allegedly, the probe will also dig into what potential whistleblowers told the troubled manufacturer, before the two crashes which killed 346 people.

Also flagged as points of potential concern are Boeing’s compliance with production safety guidelines.

This builds on Boeing’s February admission that company inspectors found tools, rags, and debris inside in the fuel tanks of over 30 737 MAX aircraft.

The New York Post reported on Tuesday that both the DOJ and the FAA interviewed former Boeing manager Ed Pierson, who raised concerns to line managers about safety issues at Boeing’s Washington state facility.


Pierson gave the company short shrift before the US House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure in December of last year.

“By June 2018,” he said, “I had grown gravely concerned that Boeing was prioritising production speed over quality and safety.”


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