Boeing’s CEO acknowledges mistake following Alaska Airlines midair door Plug incident

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By Carina

In a recent meeting with employees, Boeing’s President and Chief Executive, Dave Calhoun, openly acknowledged the company’s mistake after an incident involving an Alaska Airlines-operated flight. 

The incident occurred when the door plug of the aircraft blew off shortly after takeoff.

Credit: DepositPhotos

Boeing CEO commits to full cooperation with NTSB in door plug investigation

During the meeting on January 9th, Calhoun expressed the company’s commitment to working with the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), which is actively investigating the incident.

He emphasized Boeing’s dedication to maintaining complete transparency throughout the investigation process. A Boeing spokesperson confirmed these statements to CBS News.

“We’re going to approach this number one acknowledging our mistake,” Calhoun stated during the meeting. 

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Boeing CEO emphasizes transparency in door plug incident

He continued, “We’re going to approach it with 100 percent and complete transparency every step of the way.”

“We are going to work with the NTSB, who is investigating the accident itself, to find out what the cause is. We have a long experience with this group. They’re as good as it gets.”

The incident that prompted Calhoun’s comments occurred on January 5th, when the door plug detached from Alaska Airlines Flight 1282. 

The aircraft was en route to California from Portland International Airport in Oregon. 

Emergency landing and grounding of Boeing 737 Max 9 aircraft

The door plug, a panel covering an unused emergency door on the Boeing 737 Max 9, blew out, leaving a significant hole in the plane. 

This incident occurred approximately six minutes into the flight at an altitude of around 16,000 feet, as reported by the NTSB.

Fortunately, none of the passengers or crew members were seriously injured. 

However, as a precautionary measure, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) temporarily grounded all 171 Boeing 737 Max 9 aircraft worldwide. 

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FAA’s safety inspection process for Boeing 737-9 MAX aircraft

The FAA initiated safety inspections, emphasizing that safety, not speed, would determine the timeline for their return to service.

To begin the safety inspection operation, Boeing is required to provide instructions to operators for inspections and maintenance. 

The FAA noted that Boeing had initially offered instructions, which are currently being revised based on feedback received. 

The FAA will conduct a thorough review upon receiving the revised instructions.

Alaska Airlines grounds 737-9 MAX fleet for safety inspections

Alaska Airlines, which operated the aircraft involved in the incident, confirmed the grounding of its 737-9 MAX fleet. 

Alaska Airlines at the gate — Stock Photo, Image
Credit: DepositPhotos

The airline anticipates that inspections of its aircraft will be completed in the coming days. Ensuring the airworthiness and safety of these planes remains a top priority for the airline.

Calhoun praised Alaska Airlines for swiftly grounding its fleet of Max 9s with door plugs, highlighting that this action likely prevented another potential accident. 

The quick response and safety precautions taken by the airline demonstrate a commitment to passenger safety.

NTSB investigates dislodged door plug found in schoolteacher’s backyard

In a separate update, the NTSB revealed that the dislodged door plug from the Alaska Airlines plane was found in the backyard of a schoolteacher, identified as Bob, near Portland. 

The NTSB is actively examining the door plug and plans to send it to a laboratory in Washington, D.C., for further analysis.

Boeing’s CEO, Dave Calhoun, has openly acknowledged the company’s error in the recent door plug incident, emphasizing Boeing’s commitment to transparency and cooperation with the NTSB in the ongoing investigation. 

The incident led to the grounding of Boeing 737 Max 9 aircraft and heightened safety measures to ensure the airworthiness of these planes.

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