Relatives of Ralph Nader sue Boeing over Ethiopian Airlines crash

Relatives of Ralph Nader sue Boeing over Ethiopian Airlines crash

Boeing Chief Executive Dennis Muilenburg issued a statement Thursday from the Renton 737 factory expressing "the vast gravity of these events across our company", and acknowledging the role the new Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System, or MCAS, played in the crash.

On March 10, 157 people on board an Ethiopian Airlines flight - a Boeing 737 MAX jet - lost their lives after their flight crashed just a few minutes after take-off from Adis Ababa.

According to Muilenburg, "it's apparent that in both flights the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System, known as MCAS, activated in response to erroneous angle of attack information". "We own it, and we know how to do it", he said.

The company said that to make sure unintended activation of the system doesn't happen again, Boeing is developing software and "associated comprehensive pilot training" for the Max.

Earlier this week, USA regulators demanded further improvements to a proposed MCAS fix before it could be submitted for review and announced a review of the certification of the automated flight control system on the 737 MAX.

A day earlier, the nation's transport minister called on Boeing to review the 737 Max flight-control system before allowing planes to be used, after a preliminary government report showing the doomed jetliner couldn't recover from an uncommanded and persistent nose dive shortly after takeoff.

"I'd like to reiterate our deepest sympathies are with the families and loved ones of those who lost their lives in the accident", Boeing Commercial Airplanes President and CEO Kevin McAllister said in a statement issued Thursday.

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"These guys are executing the check list", Dennis Tajer, a spokesman for the American Airlines pilot union, said of the Ethiopian pilots after reviewing the report.

The report said that pilot-side sensor readings connected to the computer system varied wildly and affected everything from their understanding of the plane's pitch to its airspeed.

Contrary to the report of preliminary investigation by the Ethiopian authority, excess speed by the pilot and hasty command have been identified as possible factors responsible for the crash of Ethiopian Boeing Max 737 jet.

Shortly after the Lion Air crash past year, Boeing issued a bulletin reminding operators of emergency guidelines to override the anti-stall system, amid indications it had received erroneous information from Angle of Attack sensors during that disaster.

Boeing has admitted a sensor on its 737 Max jet malfunctioned during two recent flights that crashed, killing everyone on board.

A grand jury convened by US prosecutors last month subpoenaed a former Boeing engineer demanding he provide testimony and documents related to the 737 Max. But they turned the system back on 32 seconds before hitting the ground and tried unsuccessfully to use it to point the nose up. Other pilots said the flight crew's actions were understandable given the chaotic situation.

Boeing revealed it has devoted a large amount of resources towards working with the Federal Aviation Administration to implement a new software update that will ensure similar accidents do not occur again.