FAA chief: Manuals should have told MAX pilots more about safety system

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FAA chief: Manuals should have told MAX pilots more about safety system

Unread post by bimjim » Thu May 16, 2019

https://www.saukvalley.com/2019/05/15/f ... m/ayq8i2f/

FAA chief: Manuals should have told MAX pilots more about safety system
Mike Baker Tribune News Service
2019/05/15

SEATTLE

The head of the Federal Aviation Administration said Wednesday he believes documentation on Boeing’s 737 MAX should have told pilots more about the safety system that’s suspect in two crashes that killed 346 people.

Daniel Elwell, the FAA’s acting administrator and a former commercial pilot, said in testimony before a congressional committee that he expects the FAA will amplify the description of the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS) system so that pilots will be able to better respond to an anomaly.

“I, at the beginning when I first heard of this, thought that the MCAS should have been more adequately explained in the ops manual and the flight manual, absolutely,” Elwell said.

MCAS is suspected of playing a role in both the Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines crashes, with the system pushing the nose of those planes down after getting faulty data from a sensor.

Elwell was also critical of Boeing’s handling of a cockpit warning light that would have alerted pilots of a problem with those sensors. While Elwell said the warning light was for the sake of maintenance, not flight safety, he said it took Boeing too long – 13 months – to notify the FAA about a software problem that was causing the indicator not to work properly.

“You have our commitment that we’re going to look into that and fix that,” Elwell told lawmakers.

Elwell defended the overall system under which the 737 MAX was certified. He described how the FAA was involved in test flights and in the safety analysis of the MCAS system.

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