“I liked what I saw”: FAA conducts Boeing 737 MAX flight test, says process not completed yet
CA, 01 Oct 2020
The head of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Administrator Stephen Dickson conducted a nearly two-hour evaluation flight at the controls of a Boeing 737 MAX on Wednesday, a milestone for the jet to win approval to resume flying after two fatal crashes.
"I like what I saw on the flight," Dickson told a news conference, but said he was not ready to give the jet a clean bill of health, with FAA reviews still ongoing.
"We are not to the point yet where we have completed the process," Dickson said.
The Max was grounded shortly after Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 crashed in March 2019, only about five months after the crash of Lion Air Flight in Oct. 2018. Both crashes have been blamed on an automated anti-stall system that pushed the noses of the planes down based on faulty readings from sensors. Boeing hopes to win FAA approval later this year for changes it has made to flight-control software and computers.
Dickson has repeatedly said he would not sign off until he flew it himself and was "satisfied that I would put my own family on it without a second thought." He stated during the press conference that the jet will not be approved for passenger service until all known safety issues “that played a role in the tragic loss of 346 lives” are addressed.
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