The US aircraft manufacturer Boeing announced Friday the reduction in the production rate of its 737 Max airliner immobilized around the world after two deadly crashes in less than six months.
The company said that by mid-April, it would reduce the production of its aircraft to 42, instead of 52 per month, in order to focus on repairing the flight control software involved in the crashes.
“We are temporarily adjusting the 737’s production system to account for the MAX delivery pause, which would allow us to prioritize additional resources to focus on software certification and deliver the MAX in flight. We decided to temporarily switch from a production rate of 52 to 42 aircraft per month from mid-April,” said Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg in a statement.
The announcement of a reduction in production comes after Boeing acknowledged that a second software problem had to be solved on the Max. This discovery explains why the manufacturer had rejected its ambitious program to revive the plane.
Preliminary reports on accidents in Indonesia and Ethiopia revealed that faulty sensor readings had mistakenly triggered an anti-stall system that had lowered the nose of the aircraft. The pilots of each plane struggled to regain control of the automated system.
A total of 346 people died in the Lion Air flight incidents on October 28, 2018, and Ethipian Airlines on March 10. Boeing faces a growing number of lawsuits filed by the families of the victims.
Boeing’s CEO also announced the creation of a special committee from the company’s board of directors to review aircraft design and development.
“The committee must confirm the effectiveness of our procedures to ensure the maximum level of safety on our 737 MAX program and programs for our other devices, and also make recommendations to improve our procedures,” the statement said.