FAA’s role in Boeing 737 and 787 production oversight to be audited

The office of the inspector general of the U.S. Transportation Department has confirmed that it will now audit the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA’s) oversight of Boeing’s manufacture of the 737 and 787 jet. In particular the FAA will review the FAA’s processes for “identifying and resolving” production issues and “addressing allegations of undue pressure within the production environment.”

Deliveries of the 787 Dreamliner were suspended in May 2021 after concerns were voiced over proposed inspection methods. According to Reuters news agency, House Transportation Committee chair Peter DeFazio and aviation subcommittee chair Rick Larsen said in a statement late Wednesday the audit “should be thorough and unsparing to help prevent a repeat of safety issues previously identified by FAA and to ensure the manufacture and production of safe aircraft.”

Back in February of this year the FAA made it clear it would not permit Boeing to self-certify new 787s and that instead the government watchdog would retain the authority to issue airworthiness certificates until it is confident “Boeing’s quality control and manufacturing processes consistently produce 787s that meet FAA design standards.” A Senate report issued in December 2021 made it clear that the FAA needed to improve the way it oversaw Boeing and new-plane certification while also reviewing a series of whistleblower allegations.  The Senate report stated that the “FAA’s certification process suffers from undue pressure on line engineers and production staff.”

Email Post to a Friend Email Post to a Friend