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U.S. watchdog will review FAA decision to unground Boeing 737 MAX

Stock Markets Apr 20, 2021 07:25PM ET
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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A Boeing 737 MAX 8 sits outside the hangar during a media tour of the Boeing 737 MAX at the Boeing plant in Renton, Washington

By David Shepardson

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -The U.S. Transportation Department's Office of Inspector General said on Tuesday it will audit the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) November decision to unground the Boeing (NYSE:BA) 737 MAX and other agency decisions.

The 737 MAX was grounded in March 2019 after two crashes in Indonesia and Ethiopia within five months killed 346 people. The FAA approved its return to service after significant safety enhancements developed during the plane's 20-month grounding.

The new audit will examine the FAA’s actions following the two accidents, including the the agency's risk assessments, the grounding of the aircraft and the subsequent recertification, the inspector general's office said. Boeing declined to comment.

The inspector general's office added "its objective is to evaluate FAA’s processes and procedures for grounding

aircraft and implementing corrective actions."

The FAA said it "will cooperate fully with the Inspector General’s audit, as it has with all other outside reviews of the agency’s oversight of the Boeing 737 MAX."

FAA Administrator Steve Dickson told Reuters in November he was "100% confident" in the safety of the 737 MAX.

The FAA imposed new training requirements to deal with a key safety system called MICAS that was blamed for the two fatal crashes as well as significant new safeguards and other software changes to ensure the system does not erroneously activate.

The inspector general issued two prior reports on the 737 MAX including one in February that outlined "weaknesses" in the FAA's certification of the aircraft.

Legislation signed into law in December revamped the FAA’s aircraft certification program and required an independent review of Boeing's safety culture.

Boeing agreed to a $2.5 billion settlement with the Justice Department in January as part of a deferred prosecution agreement after the government said the crashes "exposed fraudulent and deceptive conduct by employees of one of the world’s leading commercial airplane manufacturers."

U.S. watchdog will review FAA decision to unground Boeing 737 MAX
 

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Comments (3)
iTrung Nguyen Duc
iTrung Nguyen Duc Apr 20, 2021 9:19PM ET
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when they audit?
Gamer Turtle
GamerTurtle Apr 20, 2021 6:17PM ET
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they'll be looking at this plane with a magnifying glasses, anyone from faa clear this and something goes wrong will wish he is on a 737 max. faa can try to put the blame on boeing first time around, but now it is national attention, faa can't risk it like the way it did in the past.
Al Gore
Al Gore Apr 20, 2021 5:33PM ET
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lol i aint never going on a max plane
Gamer Turtle
GamerTurtle Apr 20, 2021 5:33PM ET
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you're in luck because it is unlikely they'll be in air anytime soon
 
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