Families Demand Retribution for Boeing Crash Victims

(IntegrityTimes.com) – In 2018 a Boeing 737 Max 8 flying out of Jakarta, Indonesia crashed killing all 189 people on board. In 2019 another Boeing 737 Max 8 crashed flying out of Ethiopia killing all 157 people on board. Then the entire Boeing 737 Max fleet worldwide while the problems were investigated.

Boeing has continued to experience problems with their airplanes, although none of them have been so deadly since then. On Tuesday June 18 Boeing CEO Dave Calhoun testified before a Senate subcommittee while families of the victims of the 2018 and 2019 crashes held up photos of their lost loved ones.

In 2021 the Department of Justice (DOJ) charged Boeing with conspiracy to defraud the U.S. but deferred prosecution when the company agreed to pay a $2.5 billion fine. After an incident in January of this year when a door plug blew out mid-flight on a Boeing 737 Max 9 operated by Alaska Airlines the DOJ asserted that Boeing has violated their agreement. Boeing assert that they have not breached the agreement.

However, the DOJ are now considering moving forward with the prosecution by July 7. Paul Cassell, an attorney who represents families of the victims’ families, says the DOJ should pursue criminal prosecution of the company. He also suggests that part of the fines the company is liable for could be suspended if Boeing uses those funds for an independent corporate monitor and improvements to its safety programs.

Boeing Chief Executive Officer Dave Calhoun will be stepping down by the end of the year and Boeing is still searching for his replacement. Before he began his testimony, Calhoun turned and faced the families of those who died in the Boeing 737 Max 8 crashes offering apologies and a vow to focus on safety. Whistleblower Sam Mohawk, who was a quality assurance investigator at Boeing’s 737 assembly plant near Seattle, testified as well. He claimed that the company mishandled “hundreds” of faulty parts which he believes were likely installed in airplanes including the 737 Max.

Members of the subcommittee asked Calhoun about the allegations that Boeing managers had retaliated against employees who voiced safety concerns. Asked if he had ever spoken to any of the whistleblowers, he admitted he had not and agreed that maybe he should. Republican Senator Josh Hawley of Missouri grilled Calhoun about his salary and accused him of cutting corners to “squeeze every piece of profit” he could out of Boeing.

The Federal Aviation Administration says that they will be thoroughly investigating the claims that were raised in the Senate report. Calhoun says that the company is making progress in their work to strengthen safety and quality.

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