Boeing CEO acknowledges mistake in Alaska Airlines mid-air door blowout

Boeing CEO acknowledges mistake in Alaska Airlines mid-air door blowout

Boeing president and CEO, Dave Calhoun, has admitted his manufacturer was at fault after the emergency door on an Alaska Airlines 737 MAX 9 blew off mid-flight.

The mid-air emergency, which took place over Portland and saw the plane make an emergency landing, has triggered the global grounding of the MAX 9 aircraft, with 171 planes grounded in the US alone. No one was seriously injured in the Alaska Airlines emergency.

All carriers in the United States have been made to inspect their planes and United Airlines reported that it found loose bolts on its door plugs as a result of this.

Calhoun addressed his staff on Tuesday and said the firm was “acknowledging our mistake”.

The Boeing chief executive continued: “We’re going to approach it with 100 per cent and complete transparency every step of the way.”

Calhoun told staff that the company would be working alongside the US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) as it investigates the incident.

“They will get to a conclusion… the FAA [Federal Aviation Authority] who has to now deal with airline customers who want airplanes back in service safely and to ensure all the procedures are put into place, inspections, all the readiness actions that are required to ensure every next airplane that moves into the sky is in fact safe and that this event can never happen again,” he said.

Calhoun also empathised with those who watched footage of the incident: “When I got that picture, all I could think about – I didn’t know what happened to whoever was supposed to be in the seat next to that hole in the airplane. I’ve got kids, I’ve got grandkids and so do you. This stuff matters. Every detail matters.”

The FAA said that the MAX 9 aircraft with a plug door will not return to the skies until each one can safely return to operation.

Since the emergency, Boeing’s share price has dropped 9 per cent, slashing approximately US$12 billion from its market cap.

(Featured Image: Alaska Airlines emergency door blown out – X/@yuvnique)

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