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How the Boeing 737 Max 8 was allowed to fly in the first place.

Read the full article on the New Yorker. 

With virtually every day that has passed since the crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302, which killed a hundred and fifty-seven people, more disturbing news has emerged. 

On Sunday, the Seattle Times, the home-town newspaper of Boeing’s commercial division, published the results of a lengthy investigation into the federal certification of the 737 Max. It found that the F.A.A. outsourced key elements of the certification process to Boeing itself, and that Boeing’s safety analysis of the new plane contained some serious flaws, including several relating to the MCAS. 

It raises serious questions about why Boeing didn’t tell airlines and pilots much more about the MCAS—in particular, how to disengage it in an emergency—before the 737 Max was put into service, in 2017. Boeing has delivered three hundred and seventy-six of these planes to airlines around the world. Practically all of them have now been grounded out of safety concerns.

How can a manufacturer of something as complex and potentially dangerous as a passenger jet be allowed to play such a large role in deciding whether its product is safe? It turns out that the F.A.A., with congressional approval, has “over the years delegated increasing authority to Boeing to take on more of the work of certifying the safety of its own airplanes,” the Seattle Times said.

Read the full article on the New Yorker. 

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