Boeing put under Senate scrutiny during back-to-back hearings on aircraft maker’s safety culture

(17 Apr 2024)
RESTRICTION SUMMARY:

POOL
Washington DC – 17 April 2024
1. SOUNDBITE (English) Sam Salehpour, Current Quality Engineer, Boeing:
"In a rush to address its bottlenecks in production, Boeing had problems pushing pieces together with excessive force to make them appear that the gaps don’t exist. Even though they exist, the gap didn’t actually go away, and this may result in premature fatigue failure effectively, they are putting out defective airplanes. I respectfully, I repeatedly produced a report for my supervisors and Boeing management demonstrating that the gaps in the 787 not being properly measured or shamed in two major joints of the 787 evaluate them from Boeing. From then 29 inspected airplane data, I found gaps exceeding the specification that were not properly addressed 98.7% of the time."
++SEPARATED BY WHITE FLASH++
2. SOUNDBITE (English) Sam Salehpour, Current Quality Engineer, Boeing
"I literally saw people jumping on the pieces of the airplane to get them to align. I call it the Tarzan effect, among other improper methods. Again, I raised concerns internally. I was sidelined. I was told to shut up. I received physical threats. My my, my, my boss said I would have killed someone who said what you said in the meeting. And then this is not a safety culture when you get threatened by bringing issues of safety concerns."
++SEPARATED BY WHITE FLASH++
3. SOUNDBITE (English) Ed Pierson, Executive Director, The Foundation for Aviation Safety, Former Boeing Manager:
"The world is shocked to learn about Boeing’s current production quality issues. I’m not surprised because nothing changed after the two crashes. There was no accountability, not a single person from Boeing went to jail. Hundreds of people died and there’s been no justice. Unless action is taken and leaders are held accountable, every person stepping aboard a Boeing airplane is at risk. Government authorities ignored Boeing’s manufacturing problems until the Alaska accident. Passengers shouldn’t have to rely on whistleblowers to provide the truth. They should be able to get on airplanes and not have to worry about what model it is, whether it was designed and manufactured to the highest of standards. Whether the airline is operating and maintaining it properly, or whether government agencies are providing proper oversight."
++ENDS ON SOUNDBITE++
STORYLINE:
Boeing is in the spotlight as members of Congress examine allegations of major safety failures at the embattled aircraft manufacturer.

The Senate held back-to-back hearings on Wednesday to hear from aviation experts and people who have worked at Boeing.

The witnesses included two whistleblowers, a former Boeing manager and a current engineer at the company who has made serious safety allegations about two of Boeing’s biggest planes, the 787 Dreamliner and the 777.

I raised concerns internally. I was sidelined. I was told to shut up. I received physical threats," said Current Quality Engineer at Boeing Sam Salehpour.

"My boss said I would have killed someone who said what you said in the meeting. And then this is not a safety culture. When you get threatened by bringing issues of safety concerns, I hope that your work on this issue signals to Boeing that they must make real changes and get back to building the airplane safely."

No Boeing representatives attended either hearing but the company has disputed the engineer’s claims. Boeing has been in crisis mode since a door-plug panel blew off a 737 Max jetliner during an Alaska Airlines flight in January.

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Author: admin