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US administration blames foreign pilots for 737 Max crashes

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US administration blames foreign pilots for 737 Max crashes

Old 16th May 2019, 07:11
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US administration blames foreign pilots for 737 Max crashes

The Washington Post is reporting that top US administration officials are blaming the pilots for the two 737 Max crashes. The paper quotes them as saying that "...the problem isnít that Boeing put a faulty aircraft into the skies, nor that the Federal Aviation Administrationís lax oversight kept it flying. The trouble, they argued, comes from lousy foreign pilots..." https://www.washingtonpost.com/opini...=.14f59e6a0943
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Old 16th May 2019, 07:28
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I have watched that 3 hour 15 minute hearing - first question is who trained Sam Graves on AoA?

Second is who is willing to tell him he does not understand it in the slightest.

FAA should pull his licence or better still lets give him a few simulator tests.

Much of the hearing was professional - shame that the pilots were not.

Show of hands (not high and extremely brief - put them up and hold them up - it was a direction) and Sam Graves exclusion of all 737 time and only mentioning the MAX time experience of the pilots - is very poor and every professional pilot should bring this to congress attention.

And explain he has zero idea of AoA if he calls the AH one.
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Old 16th May 2019, 10:41
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Very tacky short sighted.
Might prove more difficult to re-certify the aircraft in other jurisdictions....

After all, those foreign pilots were just fine when Boeing considered their airlines a customer.
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Old 16th May 2019, 10:51
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This is politics, Nothing to do with improving safety . Politics and Safety very rarely mix well together. I fear the Max and the "fix"will be cleared back based on politics and not on a actual safety analysis, In fact that reminds me of the early days of the A320 in France. after the first crash in Habsheim ,
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Old 16th May 2019, 11:13
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Well, I guess outside the US the re-certification process will take much longer all of a sudden.
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Old 16th May 2019, 11:38
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Disgraceful

What can one say?

Only surprised it took this long!

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Old 16th May 2019, 11:44
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After all, those foreign pilots were just fine when Boeing considered their airlines a customer.

Exactly. Also, it appears that the GOP and the FAA are now singing from the same hymnbook as Boeing's Mike Sinnett and the FTFA-fundies here. Just Fancy That again.
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Old 16th May 2019, 12:07
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How many 737 Max threads do we need? There seem to be three running simultaneously right now.....
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Old 16th May 2019, 12:12
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The comments quoted in the article appear rather obscene knowing that they are voiced by people supposed to exercise responsibilities on behalf of millions other people.
Nowadays, it looks as though one of the political personnel's most critical skill is being able to make shocking statements.
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Old 16th May 2019, 12:42
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Thread logistics

Originally Posted by Andy_S View Post
How many 737 Max threads do we need? There seem to be three running simultaneously right now.....
So during the VW Dieselgate scandal, the diesel VW owners forum had this same problem. They ended up with a good solution.

The mods allowed 2 final threads: one consisted almost only of discreet news links in the first post, organized in a timeline of the unfolding scandal, with no duplication of stories, and links to highly specific topical threads, included in their relevant order. Anyone could post links to new reports with information that furthered the understanding of events, and their resolution, but the posts were periodically deleted by the mod, after adding to the OP.

A single second thread was periodically unlocked to allow discussion of the new events, and strictly re-locked as soon as it got stale.

All other threads were disallowed.

The mods here almost got to that point, but they created a thread of threads, not of facts in a timeline format. Close, but includes too much subjective discussion and does not really provide the newcomer with an easy to understand timeline to walk them through the story over time.

A lot of work up front to create the organization, but maybe less work in the long run playing thread whack a mole, but trying to allow new relevant threads to live for a while, tacitly encouraging new threads.

Just a thought.
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Old 16th May 2019, 12:55
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Salute!
I take issue with the title of this thread. Seriously, it should have been "WaPo claims administration blames foreign pilots" Who says? Who?
After all, that biased rag had the story about the president retrieving the Pope's cap when it blew off as they were cruising a small pond. President Trump calmly stepped over the side and walked out on the water, grabbed the cap, and gave it back to the Pope. WaPo headline was "Trump can't swim!"
'nuff politics, but WaPo is notorious for anti-administration stuff since 2016.
=====================
I watched the hearing and was disppointed in a few of the legislators, but felt the FAA and NTSB dudes did well.
The FAA explanation of the U.S. delay in grounding the plane made a lot of sense. In short, they had to have a high probability connection to MCAS or another system, and rule out coincidence and such.
The FAA administrator pointed out that they had reviewed almost 60,000 flights and only had two dozen or so related to the shaker or STS or even the AoA sensors. Zero MCAS incidents. But when Lion and ET had similar profiles, then data from the Canadian air data company ( FR24 clone?) got their attention. On a personal level, I resented the politician that came across like some of our Yeager, Hoover and Doolittle folks here. The FAA dude did not rise to the bait, and explained that his outfit had an important interest in any carrier that flew into the U.S., as well as any U.S. carrier that flew into the other countries. He avoided casting dispersions on their training or flying hour requirements or....
The hearing you should have popcorn ready will be when Boeing folks face the interrogation, and that's despite the ignorance of some cmte members..

Gums opines.....

Last edited by gums; 16th May 2019 at 20:38. Reason: carify opinion in italics
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Old 16th May 2019, 13:55
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Originally Posted by gums View Post
.... , but felt the FAA and NTSB dudes did well.
From the reports it seems that the FAA guy did his best to handle some very "leading" and biased questions. Given that FAA has in the past raised issues of international standards (as also has EASA, frankly - both have banned various "third world" carriers and countries at various times) he could hardly turn round now and say "No, all foreign pilots and jurisdictions are fine, it must be all Boeing's fault." The fact that he did agree that there were issues with foreign standards doesn't, to me, mean he agreed it's all the pilots' fault. But as usual any high profile news story is both politicized and reduced to very simplistic "us versus them" type of storylines.
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Old 16th May 2019, 14:04
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To now blame foreign customer's pilots is the worst strategy to get over this crisis. The market for the MAX is global. Offending foreign countries will not help to get it flying again soon and then to sell more.
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Old 16th May 2019, 14:08
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Given that 80% of the MAX built so far are to airlines outside the US.....brilliant!
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Old 16th May 2019, 14:18
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Only after the Lion Air accident global operators learned about MCAS and only recently they learned about AoA-disagree-warnings not working in MAX standard configuration as advertised.
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Old 16th May 2019, 14:24
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Originally Posted by Less Hair View Post
To now blame foreign customer's pilots is the worst strategy to get over this crisis. The market for the MAX is global. Offending foreign countries will not help to get it flying again soon and then to sell more.
I guess we have a few posters here from the "the hatch just blew" school of accident investigation. I agree with you, though, that this whole thing is highly politicized, which helps nothing.

I've been reading the observations from experienced flight deck pros on PPRuNe for a bit over 10 years (so I am a relative newby).
What is rather apparent from soaking that all up is that there is NOT an international standard for airline pilots that any of us can comfortably assume when we sit down in the tube and strap that seat belt on while the CC brief us on the O2 mask and where the exits are. Culture informs cockpit culture; lessons learned sometimes aren't; corporate cultures - not just national culture - have influences that may or may not have been addressed in the testimony in re what you can assume that a given crew on a flight deck does or can do. After decades of folding in the hard lessons learned in the interest of safety, I am not impressed by those who will stick their heads in the sand and pretend that those lessons have been spread evenly across all passenger carrying organizations.

The 777 @ SFO reopened that can of worms. But even that crash points to something else also - being comfortable with one system, and then transitioning to another system where some functions are "similar but different" ... can lead to technical surprise and crew confusion. The remedy to that is training and system mastery: where's that as a priority? (Was the Captain in the ET Max crash well served by that, training? Color me skeptical).

There seems to be a problem, that a few posts in this thread demonstrate, with confronting the fact that not all flight deck crews are equal in ability nor in experience. (FWIW, the US regulators made a decision to demand 1500 hours experience before carrying passengers, as compared to 200 hours in a variety of other countries, to include maybe a few in Europe. How much that helps safety I don't know, but I don't think it hurt).
But that's one data point of many that hardly addresses the issues of assaults on training/recency/currency due to financial pressure.

None of the above relieves Boeing of: (1) some (IMO) bizarre choices in implementing the systems in the Max (single point of failure being one such choice in re AoA signal and triggering ... ) and (2) how crews were taken by surprise by a new feature due at least in part to the roll out/implementation scheme.
Those are causal factors related to the machine, and to training philosophy, but I digress.

I will ask posters to stop with the hair pulling in re someone speaking a truth - not all systems that produce Captains and FOs are equal. Well, no, they aren't. (I won't begin to offer which is the best, but anyone running an airline and/or a national regulatory agency sure as hell ought to be looking into that ...)

FACT for you: some airlines are so egregiously bad that certain nations or aviation authorities ban them from their airspace.
It isn't their machines that are the problem, it's the wet ware.

If one is to believe PPRuNe's collective memorey/experience* base of flight deck professionals over the course of 20 years of putting stuff down into internet posts, there is a willful failure demonstrated (in the posts here) to confront the variabilty of FD crews across the globe where some causal factors are Not The Machine.
And of course, some factors are related to The Machine.

Unbunch your knickers.
What irks me about this political process (as reported in the news article, so who knows how much of it is even right?) is that someone seems to be looking for a single smoking gun barrel.
Sorry, that's wrong headed.
A gatling gun is what's smoking.

Last edited by Lonewolf_50; 16th May 2019 at 14:37.
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Old 16th May 2019, 14:37
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The job is to get the MAX safely flying with the existing real world pilot population and customer base. If something needs improvement, like training, improve it. To just blame them is not enough.
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Old 16th May 2019, 14:41
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Originally Posted by Less Hair View Post
The job is to get the MAX safely flying with the existing real world pilot population and customer base. If something needs improvement, like training, improve it. To just blame them is not enough.
I don't think 'just blame them' is what is being done, and the training issue falls well within national and corporate responsibility. (And I'm sorry if my response to you was a bit snarky, I was folding up my impression of a bunch of posts into one. I think we likely agree on more than we disagree).
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Old 16th May 2019, 14:59
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Check post #1.
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Old 16th May 2019, 15:27
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I wonder why the Foreign Pilots are not crashing the A320s or the A320 Neos ......
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