Issues getting MCAS-ed Anonymous 134442
Airlines wanted to buy airplanes from a competitor. Boeing didn't want that, and quickly made the Boeing 737 MAX.
For their new plane, Boeing wanted as little pilot-retraining as possible. Pilot retraining is expensive for airlines, and would make their plane unappealing. Instead of allowing their engineers to restructure the new plane extensively, which would require pilot-retraining and costing money, the new plane had bigger engines. Debate from the engineers was shut down.
To deal with the bigger engines, they added the MCAS system, which was supposed to help rebalance the plane.
The 737 MAX had its test flight, and the pilots noticed it was a bit wobbly.
Changes were made to the MCAS system, to make it more powerful.
Someone at Boeing noticed the MCAS changed, and realised the Federal Aviation Administration wasn't aware of the more powerful MCAS system. (Especially since an FAA administrator was delegating work to Boeing, so it was Boeing checking on themselves). Nothing much happened.
Eventually Boeing removed any mentions of MCAS from the pilot's manual.
Two 737 MAXs crashed, due to the MCAS causing the planes to nosedive.
Boeing chased money. There were many warning signs, many ways Boeing could have turned back. People found concerns. The people in power could have stopped silencing or ignoring the problems, and actually addressed them. They didn't. They pushed on. They hid the problems with MCAS and the planes, and pretended everything was fine. Tragedy resulted. Boeing blamed the pilots, victims who struggled against the MCAS they had little to no training for, for being stupid.
(source: Boeing's Fatal Flaw PBS)
What similar "MCAS-like" incidents can you think up of?
It's baffling that this kind of failure chain even managed to occur once. I remember people talking about the Challenger disaster having issues getting swept under.
You'd think nobody in a top position could possibly be that stupid, but it happens.
Employee: "Hey boss, we have an issue! It probably should get fixed."
Boss: "k. now shut up."
Employee: "but what about the issue?"
Boss: "trust me it will be fine, i'll handle things. and if u keep annoying me, u will be excommunicated."
Boss proceeds to ignore the issue.
Boss: "Oh no, the issue happened.Now I have to do press management!"
Boss at press management: "Boo hoo. I sincerely regret this accident. If only this could have been prevented. :( "