NEW YORK (AP) — Internal documents reveal that Boeing employees were aware of problems with the Max 737 jet ahead of two deadly crashes, and that the company emphasized speed over safety during the approval process with the Federal Aviation Administration.
The documents were made public Thursday by Boeing at the urging of Congress. One employee said the airplane was designed by clowns. Two said they wouldn’t put their families on a Max. Another bragged about saving Boeing money by pushing limited training requirements for the new jet.
Here are some highlights from the emails and messages exchanged between Boeing employees before the disasters, which killed 346 people.
“Everyone has it in their head meeting schedule is most important because that’s what Leadership pressures and messages. All the messages are about meeting schedule, not delivering quality.”
“Time and time again, we are inundated with Boeing material specifying quality is key — this clearly is not the case or driving factor in any of the decisions that are made. Lessons learned continually say we should not accept inferior quality products because there is an unnecessary and costly overhead associated with doing so, but here we are, immediately prior to qualification, dealing with an issue that was documented weeks ago, and now accepting a reduced qualification level (read failed) as a result.”
—Email from Boeing employee in training & professional services to several Boeing employees, May 31, 2018
Employee 2: “totally. I’ll be shocked if the FAA passes this turd”
—Chat log between Boeing employees, May 18, 2018
“I still haven’t been forgiven by god for the covering up I did last year”
—Chat log between Boeing employees, May 15, 2018
Employee 1: “I don’t know how to refer to the very, very few of us on the program who are interested in only in truth But it’s mostly depressing that it’s so few”
Employee 2: “Honesty is the only way in this job — integrity when lives are on the line on the aircraft and training programs shouldn’t be taken with a pinch of salt. Would you put your family on a MAX simulator trained aircraft? I wouldn’t”
Employee 1: “No”
—Chat log between Boeing employees, Feb. 8, 2018
Employee 1: “I just jedi mind tricked this fools. I should be given $1000 every time I take one of these calls”
“I save this company a sick amount of $$$$”
Employee 2: “what did you convince them of?”
Employee 1: “to simply produce an email from me to the DGCA (India’s regulatory body for civil aviation) that states all the airlines and regulators that accept only the MAX CBT (computer-based training)”
“to make them feel stupid about trying to require any additional training requirements”
—Chat log between Boeing employees, Dec. 12, 2017
Boeing employee: “this airplane is designed by clowns, who in turn are supervised by monkeys”
—Chat log between Boeing employees, April 26, 2017
“I want to stress the importance of holding firm that there will not be any type of simulator training required to transition from NG to MAX. Boeing will not allow that to happen. We’ll go face to face with any regulator who tries to make that a requirement.”
—Email from Boeing 737 chief technical pilot about transitioning from older NG model to Max, March 28, 2017