Top FAA Regulators Never Knew of Boeing Software Issue

New rules allowed company to have more of a say in the certification procedure
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 21, 2019 9:36 AM CDT
In this March 11 photo, a Boeing 737 MAX 8 sits parked in the background at right at Boeing Co.'s Renton Assembly Plant in Renton, Wash.   (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)

(Newser) – The Boeing 737 Max is grounded as the company works on a fix for an anti-stall software issue suspected in two fatal crashes. In the meantime, the feds are trying to figure out how the jet passed FAA inspection in the first place. A story in the New York Times may provide part of the answer: The 737 Max series was among the first commercial jets to get approval under rules put in place in 2005 that put the onus on manufacturers such as Boeing to flag potential problems. No red flags were raised about the software issue to top FAA officials. Instead, they focused on issues related to lithium batteries and inflatable slides. Only low-level FAA officials were even aware of the software system, but it wasn't seen as a red flag—so much so that pilots weren't required to receive special training about it. In the meantime, the investigation intensifies:

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