US aviation regulator says Boeing hasn't submitted 737 MAX fix

Friday, 24 May, 2019

The United States was among the last to do so.

"The Government of Canada will not lift the current flight restriction of the Boeing 737-8 Max until it is fully satisfied that all concerns have been addressed by the manufacturer and the US Federal Aviation Administration, and adequate flight crew procedures and training are in place".

Now the FAA is seeking to regain the confidence of its peers and its leadership position in aviation safety.

Federal Aviation Administration acting chief Daniel Elwell said the agency's technical experts will leave "no stone unturned" as they examine a remedy Boeing is proposing to fix a malfunction linked to two fatal crashes since October.

Mike Sinnett, a Boeing vice president, said Boeing felt pilots did not need to know more about the plane's system automated anti-stall system, identified as having misfired in investigations into both crashes, given how unlikely it was considered to misfire. But Elwell seemed to suggest that the U.S. will take the lead and move first.

Elwell conceded that there may be a crisis of public confidence in Boeing's jet "right now", but said that the longstanding and proven processes of his agency that have produced the unrivaled USA aviation safety record over the past two decades will restore that lost confidence over time. When the Ethiopian accident happened, it was not a collaborative process, from Sunday night until Wednesday morning, despite our best efforts and attempts to have conversations.

"It's a constant give and take until it is exactly right", Deputy FAA Administrator Dan Elwell told reporters of the discussions with Boeing.

An aerial photo shows Boeing 737 MAX airplanes parked at the Boeing Factory in Renton, Washington, U.S. March 21, 2019.

The FAA has said that the issue of whether to make pilot training on 737 Max simulators a requirement before the plane can return to service is "still under review".

"We see no indication yet from passengers of any concern about the Max aircraft", Chief Executive Officer Michael O'Leary told Bloomberg TV in an interview in NY on Monday.

Whether Elwell's aspiration is within reach remains unclear. In 2015, the Federal Aviation Agency (FAA) recorded more than 14,000 bird strikes in the United States alone. Boeing had an important hand in certifying the original Max design and the European regulator signed off on it.

However US carriers appear ready to put the plane back in the air, with American Airlines and Southwest both scheduling flights using the jet for August in the apparent hope that it will be cleared to fly then. Once passengers fly on the plane "they will love it, and it will be a massive success for Boeing", he said.

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Elwell said the FAA sent Boeing additional questions about its proposed fixes for the MAX planes, which caused the delay.