Ethiopian airlines puts Boeing under spotlight

ADDIS ABABA ETHIOPIA- MARCH 17 A woman lies on the coffin of her loved one during a memorial service for the Ethiopian passengers and crew who perished in the Ethiopian Airways ET302 crash at Selassie Church

The second crash triggered a worldwide grounding of the 737 Max 8 aircraft.

What is the MCAS system anyway?

The United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said findings from the crash site and "newly refined satellite data" warranted "further investigation of the possibility of a shared cause for the two incidents".

- Boeing has stopped delivery of all new MAX jets to its customers after the crash in Ethiopia on March 10 that killed 157 people.

The company now faces the challenge of proving the jets are safe to fly amid suspicions that faulty sensors and software contributed to the two crashes that killed 346 people in less than six months.

Investigators are now anxious that the MCAS could have malfunctioned or that pilots didn't have enough training with the new program before it went into use.

The advisory instructed the operators to be keen not to allow the MCAS to cause the plane to take a nose dive, an occurrence that is similar to both plane crashes.

In one of the most detailed descriptions yet of the relationship between Boeing and the Federal Aviation Administration during the 737 Max's certification process, the Seattle Times reported Sunday that the USA regulator delegated much of the safety assessment to Boeing and that the analysis the planemaker in turn delivered to the authorities had crucial flaws.

Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircrafts have been grounded around the world.

Southwest and American are the two largest domestic owners of 737 Max 8 and 9 jets, although they make up less than 5 percent of Southwest's fleet and less than 3 percent for American.

Both planes with 737 MAXs and used the MCAS safety system, which, in a bid to stop a flight from stalling above the clouds, pushes a plane's nose down if a safety sensor detects pushing the plane's nose up.

Under global rules, a preliminary report on the crash must be released within 30 days. Both crashes happened shortly after takeoff.

In November, Boeing issued a bulletin for how to reset the stabiliser if it started to push the plane's nose down. Articles appear on euronews.com for a limited time.

"A Boeing spokesman said "(the) 737 MAX was certified in accordance with the identical FAA requirements and processes that have governed certification of all previous new airplanes and derivatives", according to the Reuters news agency. Ethiopian Airlines says its pilots received special training on the software.

Experts from the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board and the plane's manufacturer Boeing are among those involved in the investigation.

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