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Boeing 737 MAX 8 crashes and effects on AA 737 MAX 8s (NOT reaccommodation)

Boeing 737 MAX 8 crashes and effects on AA 737 MAX 8s (NOT reaccommodation)

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This thread is dedicated to the effect on AA from the October 29, 2018 and March 10, 2019 crashes if two Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft in Indonesia and Ethiopia, respectively.

To discuss the probable and limited return of the Boeing MAX to service with AA at the end of 2020 and increasingly in 2021, please see

American Planning 737 MAX Service Restoration (Limited Dec and 2021)

To discuss reaccommodation by AA subsequent to the grounding of all Boeing MAX 8s and 9s by the US Federal Aviation Administration on 13 March 2019, please refer to 737 MAX grounded 13 Mar 2019. What to do if you were supposed to fly on one?

13 March 2019: All US airline Boeing 737 MAX 8 and 9 aircraft are grounded by US Federal Aviation Administration emergency order. AA has removed all 737 MAX 8 from scheduling through...
“Based on the latest guidance, the airline anticipates that the resumption of scheduled commercial service on American’s fleet of Boeing 737 MAX aircraft will occur (limited schedule Dec 2020).

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The thread regarding the 10 March 2019 Ethiopian Airlines ET 302 737 MAX 8 crash out of Adis Ababa is Ethiopian Airlines: Boeing 737 Max 8 crashes on way to Kenya [ET302 ADD-NBO 10MAR19]. Link.

The thread regarding the 29 October 2018 Lion Air JT 610 737 MAX 8 crash out of Jakarta is Lion Air flight from Jakarta has crashed
. Link.

The best narrative and information available is probably the Aviation Herald’s Crash: Lion B38M near Jakarta on Oct 29th 2018, aircraft lost height and crashed into Java Sea, wrong AoA data, by Simon Hradecky, created Friday, Oct 25th 2019 13:35Z, last updated Friday, Oct 25th 2019 16:05Z. Link.

American Airlines ordered 100 Boeing 737 MAX 8 (7M8) with options for 60 more. The first 737 MAX -8 flew at the assembly facility in Renton, WAshington, USA on 29 Jan 2016. Deliveries to AA commenced in late in 2017, with four delivered in 2017,16 more during 2018, with 20 more to be delivered during 2019. IATA code B38M; AA code "7M8".

Link to the story of how 737 MAX’ birth in the DFW Admirals Club and the forces that shaped it.

29 October 2018: Indonesian carrier Lion Air Flight 610 on October 29 crashed into the sea soon after takeoff with the loss of all aboard, apparently due to the erroneous data from a faulty Angle of Attack sensor, which caused the MCAS (Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System) to assume the plane was about to stall, which activated the downward force on the Stabilizer Trim to get the nose down. Link to BBC article.

Link to Aviation Herald discussion.

Link to FlyerTalk airline forum thread regarding this incident.

“Instead of switching off the Stabilizer Trim the pilots appear to have battled the system.” Link

This aircraft had been written up as having a faulty AOA indicator for the previous three flights it had taken. It is unclear if Lion Air had performed adequate maintenance procedures after the reports or withdraw the aircraft from service until the fault could be completely cleared.

7 November 2018: The US Federal Aviation Administration / FAA issued an Airworthiness Directive (AD note) covering the AOA within a few days, giving US airlines 30 days to comply with the AD.

7 November 2018: Boeing issued revised operating instructions covering the revised MCAS used in the MAX 8, updating the MAX operations manual. See the manual update and the switches referenced in this post.

See “What is the Boeing 737 MAX Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System?”, updated November 17 to explain the MCAS and electric trim override operation, here: link.

10 March 10, 2019: An Ethiopian Airlines 737 MAX 8 departing Addis Ababa to Nairobi turned back to the airport soon after takeoff, but crashed with the loss of all aboard.

Link to BBC article.

Link to Aviation Herald discussion.

Link to FlyerTalk airline forum thread regarding this incident.

10 March 10, 2019: The US National Transportation Board / NTSB has dispatched an investigation team, as have Boeing, to Addis Ababa to assist the Ethiopian investigators in determining the cause(s) of the crash. The “black boxes” (cockpit voice and the flight data recorder have been recovered.

A revised MCAS is in the works, and the FAA is expected to issue an AD note when the MCAS update is done. This is expected to occur in May, 2019.

11 March 2019: China grounded its 737 MAX 8 (not MAX 9) fleet.

11 March 2019: the US FAA stated it would not ground US (AA, AS, UA, WN) 737 MAX aircraft at this time.

Link to FAA Airworthiness Notification for USA registered B38M aircraft PDF.

Link to Wall Street Journal article.

11 March 2019: AA APFA Flight Attendant union spokesperson asked AA to ground the MAX 8s. (TPG)

11 March 2019: AA pilots through their APA union have requested passengers allow the investigators do their work and refrain from jumping to conclusions. “We caution against speculation about what may have caused this tragic accident,” the Air Line Pilots Association said in a statement. (TPG)

12 March 2019: The nation members of the European Union, the United Kingdom and several other nations ban their airlines’ operation, and other airlines’ overflight or flights, of the B38M aircraft. Link to New York Times article.

12 March 2019: Other USA airlines operating 737 MAX aircraft (of all types) are United (UA), Southwest (WN). AS has ordered the MAX 9, but deliveries have not yet been made.

Link to The Points Guy “how to tell if you’re flying a 737 MAX 8” article

13 March 2019: American Airlines pilots’ union APA issues statement in support of the AA B38M: “The AA APA spokesman says AA's MAX 8s have additional indicators on the planes, which others do not have. He says they're the only ones equipped with TWO AOA displays - one for each pilot. This, I guess, is why AA feels they can keep flying the MAX 8. The spokesman said he felt UA and SW (WN) were getting these added to their MAX planes. “ - Econometrics

https://www.cnbc.com/video/2019/03/1...ilot-says.html

13 March 2019: Canada grounds Canadian B38M aircraft. The US is the sole remaining nation to allow operation of the 737 MAX 8. Link to USA Today article.

13 March 2019: US Federal Aviation Administration issues emergency order for immediate grounding all USA airline operated Boeing 737 MAX 8 and 9 aircraft, effectively immediately. Link NYT story.

13 March 2019: American Airlines issues announcement of 7M8 grounding. Link to PDF. According to AA:

On average, American operates 85 flights per day on the MAX 8, out of 6,700 departures throughout the American Airlines system. Our operations center is working to re-route aircraft throughout the system to cover as much of our schedule as we can.
13 March 2019: AA issues policy allowing those scheduled for 7M8 flights through April 4 to refund or change without fees for cancellations, or to make free changes to their flight plans. See the thread linked to at the top of this Wiki for a link.

14 March 2019: It is announced the French BEA will retrieve the data from the Ethiopian Cockpit Voice Recorder and Flight Data Recorder.

Link to Eight things you might not know about black boxes
By Cristen Tilley, ABC Australia

15 March 2019: BBC article states FAA says the MAX will not be cleared for flight at least until May. Link to story.

15 March 2019: On the other hand, CNBC states Boeing will have the anti-stall software update for the MAX ready in ten days, and that the FAA is expected to sign off on the modification on March 25, 2019.

NOTE: Thus Wikipost is locked. Please contact JDiver by PM, or use the report post to moderator button , to request changes or correct errors, etc.






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Old Oct 29, 19, 8:58 am
  #676  
 
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Originally Posted by sdsearch View Post
Are you not aware that the FAA has to re-certify it first? They still haven't done that, and it's unclear when they will, and no US airline is willing to fly it again until at least the FAA re-certifies it.
There's nothing "willing" about it. They're not allowed to fly them commercially until 737 MAX is certified to do so.
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Old Oct 29, 19, 9:20 am
  #677  
 
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Originally Posted by rbAA View Post
When they stop falling out of the sky.
Wrong. They have stopped. There has not been a crash since when? And they did not just "fall out of the sky". A well trained pilot would have been able to prevent the crashes. In fact that happened to the Indonesian Max on the flight before it crashed (pilot disconnected the system causing trouble and allowed the plane to land safely). The real answer is when the FAA certifies it to fly passengers again. I have full confidence that when that happens the plane will be 100% safe and protected against even poorly trained pilots.
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Old Oct 29, 19, 9:29 am
  #678  
 
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Originally Posted by skimthetrees View Post
Wrong. They have stopped. There has not been a crash since when? And they did not just "fall out of the sky". A well trained pilot would have been able to prevent the crashes. In fact that happened to the Indonesian Max on the flight before it crashed (pilot disconnected the system causing trouble and allowed the plane to land safely). The real answer is when the FAA certifies it to fly passengers again. I have full confidence that when that happens the plane will be 100% safe and protected against even poorly trained pilots.
MCAS was not in the flight manual. 350+ people died because of negligence, lets not waste time normalizing that and blaming pilots, when it's clear Boeing dropped the ball, and deliberately tried to cover it up. It's not a pilots job to overcome that.
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Old Oct 29, 19, 10:38 am
  #679  
 
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Originally Posted by skimthetrees View Post
Wrong. They have stopped. There has not been a crash since when? And they did not just "fall out of the sky". A well trained pilot would have been able to prevent the crashes. In fact that happened to the Indonesian Max on the flight before it crashed (pilot disconnected the system causing trouble and allowed the plane to land safely). The real answer is when the FAA certifies it to fly passengers again. I have full confidence that when that happens the plane will be 100% safe and protected against even poorly trained pilots.
Grounded plane hasn't crashed. Amazing success.
While I agree that pilot training re:hand flying could be better, it is also important to design a plane that won't crash twice in quick succession with average pilots.
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Old Oct 29, 19, 11:30 am
  #680  
 
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Originally Posted by nmpls View Post
Grounded plane hasn't crashed. Amazing success.
Previous poster implied that they had.

Originally Posted by nmpls View Post
While I agree that pilot training re:hand flying could be better, it is also important to design a plane that won't crash twice in quick succession with average pilots.
I agree. I have confidence that once the FAA re-certifies the aircraft it will be safe with average pilots. I would hope that in the US we have better than average pilots but I am not placing bets on that.
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Old Oct 29, 19, 11:59 am
  #681  
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Originally Posted by newyorkgeorge View Post
The truth is no one really knows. Apparently the CEO of Southwest said that Boeing sent the programming fix to the FAA for testing and approval and best case scenario for his airline is that the FAA would approve by year end giving WN 2 months to get their Maxes fully back into service by February 2020.
And even then there will be a two-pronged approach - getting the already-owned and grounded aircraft back into service, and also accepting the backlog of new deliveries from Boeing that were supposed to have been delivered after March 2019. I think part 2 is pretty meaningful for WN, not sure about AA, but probably.
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Old Oct 29, 19, 12:06 pm
  #682  
 
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Originally Posted by skimthetrees View Post
Previous poster implied that they had.



I agree. I have confidence that once the FAA re-certifies the aircraft it will be safe with average pilots. I would hope that in the US we have better than average pilots but I am not placing bets on that.
An “average” pilot flying a Boeing 737 in the US does not have 300 hours like some involved in the MAX accidents. There are college interns at the majors that have more flight experience and are still years away from getting an opportunity to fly a Boeing 737 per the FAA and realistic, competitive hiring minimums.

Different country, different regulations.

Last edited by clubord; Oct 29, 19 at 1:07 pm
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Old Oct 29, 19, 4:15 pm
  #683  
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And don't assume that just because the FAA re-certifies it that the rest of the world will accept that and allow it to fly in their airspace

FAA basically trashed it's international reputation with other regulators over the MAX and it will take a heck of a long time to get it back.
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Old Oct 29, 19, 4:22 pm
  #684  
 
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Originally Posted by AANYC1981 View Post
Boeing's CEO is on Capitol Hill today and tomorrow fielding questions from Congress about the Max.
Probably for a well-deserved, long overdue bashing from both sides.
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Old Oct 29, 19, 6:47 pm
  #685  
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Originally Posted by UKtravelbear View Post
And don't assume that just because the FAA re-certifies it that the rest of the world will accept that and allow it to fly in their airspace

FAA basically trashed it's international reputation with other regulators over the MAX and it will take a heck of a long time to get it back.
I would *guess* that this will be less of an issue for AA than foreign carriers. I know a lot of the MAXes we’re running out of MIA, which means they could be going to Caribbean/Latin America, and of course flying to or over Canada is also a possibility. But wouldn’t surprise me if most of those countries still follow the FAA’s lead. Euro and Asian-based carriers may have a longer delay. But I guess it’s also possible that the FAA wants to save face (to the extent it still can) and unground the planes jointly with at least one other major Foreign agency.
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Old Oct 29, 19, 6:52 pm
  #686  
 
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Originally Posted by AA100k View Post
Probably for a well-deserved, long overdue bashing from both sides.
It was a bipartisan bashing. Never would have thought I'd see that in todays climate...
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Old Oct 29, 19, 6:58 pm
  #687  
 
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I don't understand why the Boeing board hasn't fired the CEO. They made a sacrificial lamb out of the CEO of commercial aviation but the head of Boeing is Mullenberg and his reaction and statements are abominable. He needs to go, YMMV
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Old Oct 29, 19, 7:39 pm
  #688  
 
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Originally Posted by tikchik View Post
It was a bipartisan bashing. Never would have thought I'd see that in todays climate...
Congress flies just like the rest of us. It’s something we all have in common - a desire for safe travel.
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Old Oct 29, 19, 9:47 pm
  #689  
 
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Originally Posted by skimthetrees View Post
Wrong. They have stopped. There has not been a crash since when? And they did not just "fall out of the sky". A well trained pilot would have been able to prevent the crashes. In fact that happened to the Indonesian Max on the flight before it crashed (pilot disconnected the system causing trouble and allowed the plane to land safely). The real answer is when the FAA certifies it to fly passengers again. I have full confidence that when that happens the plane will be 100% safe and protected against even poorly trained pilots.
Well, planes fall out of the sky all the time. That's why they call it the "final approach." Just they fall in a more controlled manner. The issue here as I read it, is that Boeing took some shortcuts and the FAA turned a blind eye to them, plus not requiring Boeing to train the pilots of the airlines they sold the plane to, as Boeing stated that the system was similar to the previous versions of the 737. Maybe skipping the pilot training to save costs was an airline issue, maybe not. In this age of deregulation, it's hard to trust the regulators. This is one area where it would be necessary to have an independant body of experts review the issues, including both the software and the design issues, as having the industry regulate itself in this area is a recipe for more disasters.

I remember the days of wind shear crashes in the Midwest and TX, and we still have these issues-wind shears of course- fewer crashes with the training of piolts on wind shear avoidance and procedures, though I do remember one aborted approach by a USAir plene at PIT, and the co-pilot who got off right in front of me saying that was the scariest flight he's ever been on.
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Old Oct 29, 19, 9:48 pm
  #690  
 
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I'll make a bold prediction, the 737MAX will never return to service anywhere near its current form, not just for AA but for all the rest of the carriers. MAX is like a car that has an engine so powerful that if the gas pedal is pressed all the way it will fly off the ramp, sounds crazy right!!

BTW, this will require a bailout for Boeing, likely through some defense spending boost on useless stuff the Armed Forces don't need.
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