An airline industry final report on what caused the Boeing 737 MAX to crash is expected this week. Ethiopian Airlines flight 302, a 737 MAX 8 (registration ET-AVJ) operating from Addis Ababa to Nairobi, crashed shortly after takeoff on 10 March around 05:45 UTC. Eventually it went into a dive and slammed into the ground outside Addis Ababa. At no point has Boeing or anyone else recommended switching the MCAS system back on after it engages in error. CBS News transportation correspondent Kris Van Cleave reported on Wednesday that investigators increasingly believe that after take-off, something happened to one of the external sensors linked to the MCAS system on the Ethiopian jet and it began to send erroneous information, triggering the system. CHICAGO, April 4, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Boeing issued the following statement regarding the release today of the preliminary investigation report of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 by the Ethiopian Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB). Dennis A. Muilenburg, Boeing’s chief executive, said on Thursday that Boeing’s software did play a role in the crashes of both Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 and Lion Air Flight 610. "On some level, the FAA is taking Boeing's word for a lot of this," Van Cleave pointed out. Flight crews will always have the ability to override MCAS and manually control the airplane. Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 crashed just four months after the Lion Air flight went down, and in its wake, Boeing faced renewed and … The full details of what happened in the two accidents will be issued by the government authorities in the final reports, but, with the release of the preliminary report of the Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 accident investigation, it's apparent that in both flights the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System, known as MCAS, activated in response to erroneous angle of attack information. CBS News' Van Cleave reported last month that with the technology on modern passenger jets advancing so fast and resources being so tight, the FAA -- long the gold standard in airline safety regulation -- has worked increasingly closely with manufacturers. Rescue workers search through debris at the crash site of Ethiopian Airlines Flight ET302, near Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, the day after the plane crashed. The Ethiopian Civil Aviation Authority (ECAA), the agency responsible for investigating civil aviation accidents in Ethiopia, has been investigating. The Ministry of Transportation said the Ethiopian Airlines crew on the doomed flight followed all of the rules and guidance provided by Boeing, but they still were unable to regain control of the jet. Three minutes after Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 took off on the morning of Sunday, March 10, the captain of the Boeing 737 Max aircraft called out his command. -Boeing Commercial Airplanes President & CEO Kevin McAllister.Read the full statement: https://t.co/kBvAhlv4JC. "We continue to work towards a full understanding of all aspects of this accident," the FAA said. What has remained unclear -- and will remain unclear until the investigation is complete and made public -- is the extent to which a malfunctioning MCAS system caused the crashes, versus pilot error. It remains unclear why the pilots decided to turn a malfunctioning system back on. The Ethiopian government briefed journalists Thursday on the initial findings of its investigation into the crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302. The aftermath of the Ethiopian crash. On its own, the crash … Ethiopian officials say the pilots followed instructions provided by Boeing. A flight-control system that erroneously activated was implicated in both crashes – Lion Air flight 610 in Indonesia in October 2018 and Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 in Ethiopia in March 2019. Airport. The FAA noted that the Ethiopian government's probe "remains ongoing, with the participation of the FAA" and the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board -- the American government's accident investigation agency. On March 10, 2019, at about 05:44 UTC1, Ethiopian Airlines flight 302, a Boeing 737-8 (MAX), Ethiopian registration ET-AVJ, crashed near Ejere, Ethiopia, shortly after takeoff from Addis Ababa Bole International Airport (HAAB), Ethiopia. "Despite their hard work and full compliance with the emergency procedures, it was very unfortunate that they could not recover the airplane from the persistence of nose diving," the statement said. The similarities between the two crashes have prompted governments and airlines worldwide to ground all of their Max jets -- the newest passenger aircraft made by Boeing. As noted below, the FAA has also come under intense scrutiny in the wake of the Ethiopian Airlines crash, over its close working relationship with Boeing and other manufacturers in the certification process for new planes and the highly-complex systems that make them work in this day and age. The Boeing 737 Max 8 jet crashed just after takeoff from the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa on March 10, killing all 157 passengers and crew on board. The Boeing 737 MAX has been grounded worldwide for nearly a year after the two fatal crashes. The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration said in a statement that the preliminary report released on Thursday, "was prepared by the Ethiopian Civil Aviation Authority (ECAA) to share certain information obtained during the early stages of investigating.". Bird strikes are relatively common and a large passenger jet's engines can usually cope with the damage, but they have been linked to previous crashes. Ethiopian Airlines CEO: 'It looks like MCAS was activated', Preliminary Report B737 800MAX Ethiopia (PDF), Preliminary Report B737 800MAX Ethiopia (Text). The tragedy, like most transportation accidents, was likely to end up being blamed on a series of contributing factors, but Van Cleave said it would be difficult to place the blame entirely on the pilots, regardless of how they handled the response to the emergency. by FSF Editorial Staff | April 4, 2019. For two and a half minutes as Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 roared above Addis Ababa, the jet’s survival depended on the pilots turning a pair of wheels in the cockpit. MCAS was designed to push the nose of a plane down if it is climbing too steeply, which can cause a stall. Van Cleave says the Ethiopian officials stressing that the flight crew followed "all the procedures repeatedly provided by the manufacturer" also requires further explanation, as the guidance provided by Boeing in the wake of the Lion Air crash in October was not as straight forward as a, "step 1, step 2, step 3, repeat" set of instructions. Wreckage is piled at the crash scene of an Ethiopian Airlines flight crash near Bishoftu, Ethiopia. CBS News' Van Cleave notes that, in light of the assertions made by Ethiopian officials and the airline on Thursday, questions remain over how closely the doomed jet's crew followed the guidance given by Boeing regarding the MCAS system. Data has shown significant similarities between the crash and the Lion Air disaster in October, when the same model of plane crashed soon after take-off. Attorney Steven Marks filed the first lawsuit against Boeing connected to the Max 8 crash in Ethiopia. "To ensure unintended MCAS activation will not occur again, Boeing has developed and is planning to release a software update to MCAS and an associated comprehensive pilot training and supplementary education program for the 737 MAX. Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 crashed near Addis Ababa airport just six minutes after takeoff, killing all on board. (CNN)Investigators have completed their preliminary report into the crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 that crashed six minutes after takeoff from Addis Ababa on a flight … "There is an extreme amount of pressure for Boeing to find a fix and for the FAA to validate the Boeing finding," former NTSB investigator Jeff Guzzetti has told CBS News. The Transport Ministry said there was no indication that Flight 302 had struck a foreign object after take-off from Addis Ababa. ", "As previously announced, the update adds additional layers of protection and will prevent erroneous data from causing MCAS activation. "I think much of this is not deserved and will be short lived," Guzzetti added, "but it's certainly creating fear and the lack of confidence in Boeing customers and those that trust the FAA.". Boeing Commercial Airplanes President and CEO Kevin McAllister said in a statement the company will carefully review the preliminary report released Thursday and "take any and all additional steps necessary to enhance the safety of our aircraft.". Ethiopian Airlines says the initial report "clearly showed" its pilots followed guidance provided by Boeing and approved by the FAA. The Ethiopian Airlines pilots did initially follow Boeing and the FAA's suggested Emergency Procedures and turned off an electronic system to shut down the MCAS system soon after take-off. Ethiopian Airlines released a statement on Thursday, as the Ministry of Transport news conference was still going on, saying the preliminary report "clearly showed" that the Flight 302 crew "followed the Boeing recommended and FAA approved emergency procedures.". The Ethiopian Transport Minister on Thursday confirmed to CBS News that the crew of Flight 302 did switch the faulty MCAS system back on after initially disabling it when they encountered problems. She said the findings were based on information from both of the planes black boxes, the flight data and cockpit voice recorders. Boeing announced a software fix last month for the MCAS anti-stall system, intended to make it less aggressive and easier to control, but the 72 Boeing Max's in use in the U.S. were to remain grounded until the FAA approves Boeing's updates, which could take months. The United States Federal Aviation Administration will also assist in the investigation. Data from the plane's black boxes indicate the pilots then deviated from the emergency procedures by turning back on the electronic system, which meant the MCAS kicked back into action. Few airplane crashes have had repercussions on the scale of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302, which plunged into the ground six minutes after takeoff on March 10, 2019.
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