DBEA55AED16C0C92252A6554BC1553B2 Clicky DBEA55AED16C0C92252A6554BC1553B2 Clicky
May 20, 2024
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Today’s key stories focus on the Boeing whistleblower, who will testify to Congress today, and Boeing cutting ties to the PR firm it used after the MAX crashes.  Other stories focus on the cost of the MAX 9 grounding for United, Boeing’s major purchase of SAF, where Boeing went wrong, and how manufacturers can learn from it.

Links to today’s key stories follow:

  • Boeing whistleblower says 787 fleet should be grounded – The Hill
  • United Airlines reports $124 million loss in a quarter marred by grounding of some Boeing planes – Quartz
  • ‘The decisions you’re making are going to end with a smoking hole in the ground’:  Inside the Boeing catastrophe – Independent UK
  • Boeing severs ties with lobbying firm involved in 737 MAX crisis management – Benzinga 
  • Boeing makes its largest purchase of blended sustainable aviation fuel – Boeing
  • Where Boeing went wrong and what manufacturers can learn from it – Forbes

The Boeing whistleblower believes the 787 Dreamliner has gaps between the fuselage sections that are too large and could cause excessive stress and wear in the attachment points, leading to a potential catastrophic failure.  Boeing refuted those claims earlier this week, but today’s testimony will likely be widely covered in the news media.  Shimming problems in mating fuselage sections of the 787 are nothing new. Boeing did engage a new PR firm earlier this year.

The Bottom Line

The negative stories continued, led by the British Independent, bringing up the history of problems at Boeing and the focus on shareholder value as the primary metric for the company.   An article in Forbes talks about the cultural shift needed for Boeing to return to its former levels of success.  On the positive side, Boeing has invested in Sustainable Aviation Fuel, which will be necessary for the industry to meet 50% carbon reduction goals by 2035.

Boeing’s problems do cost airlines money, with United estimating the costs from the MAX 9 grounding to be $200 million, enough to offset its first-quarter loss. Tomorrow, we’ll know if the PR from the whistleblower testimony before Congress will impact Boeing during an already troubled period.

author avatar
Ernest Arvai
President AirInsight Group LLC

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