Boeing ordered to pay £12,000,000 fine over problems with 737 Max planes

A Boeing 737 Max airplane being built for Norwegian Air International turns as it taxis for take off for a test flight, Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2019, at Renton Municipal Airport in Renton, Wash. The chairman of the House Transportation Committee said Wednesday that an FAA analysis of the 737 Max performed after a fatal crash in 2018 predicted
A Boeing 737 Max airplane built for Norwegian Air International (Credits: AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

US regulators have slapped Boeing with a $17 million (£12m) fine over problems with hundreds of its 737 Max planes.

The Federal Aviation Administration found the company installed equipment containing unnaproved sensors on 759 Boeing 737 Max and Next Generation planes.

It also installed potentially faulty wing parts on 178 Boeing 737 Max aircraft.

The penalty comes more than a year after the FAA first reported the issues.

If Boeing doesn’t pay up within 30 days, it will be charged another $10.1 million (£7.1m).

The company must also tighten up its production process and sourcing arrangements under the terms of the settlement.

FAA Administrator Steve Dickson said: ‘Keeping the flying public safe is our primary responsibility. That is not negotiable, and the FAA will hold Boeing and the aviation industry accountable to keep our skies safe.’

A Boeing spokesperson told tech publication CNET: ‘We take our responsibility to meet all regulatory requirements very seriously.

‘These penalties stem from issues that were raised in 2019 and which we fully resolved in our production system and supply chain. We continue to devote time and resources to improving safety and quality performance across our operations.

‘This includes ensuring that our teammates understand all requirements and comply with them in every way.’

The settlement is the latest blow to the aerospace giant, which has already been hit with billions of dollars worth of fines in relation to its 737 MAX planes.

The planes were grounded in 2019 after nearly 350 passengers died in two fatal crashes in Indonesia and Ethiopia.

An American Airlines Boeing 737 Max takes off at Tulsa International Airport to fly to Dallas Wednesday, Dec. 2, 2020 in Tulsa, Okla.. Earlier the plane had flown a group of journalists and American Airlines employees from Dallas to the American Airlines Tulsa maintenance facility. (Mike Simons/Tulsa World via AP)
An American Airlines Boeing 737 Max takes off at Tulsa International Airport (Credits: AP)

Pilots lost control of the planes after their ‘Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System’ (MCAS) failed.

The FAA cleared the planes to fly again last year, but some critics warned the approval came to soon.

Retired senior manager Ed Pierson told US lawmakers he had raised serious concerns over production processes at Boeing’s factory in Renton, Washington, in 2018.

Pierson discussed his concerns with Boeing lawyers, but he said the company did nothing in response.

Boeing agreed to pay $2.5 billion in January after the company was accused of lying to regulators about the capabilities of its MCAS software.

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