Aviation

Boeing hits back at worker safety claims from Dreamliner facility

Christian Fleetwood

Christian Fleetwood

Boeing has called a New York Times report condemning its manufacturing site in South Carolina “distorted” and “offensive”.

The Boeing Company has denied allegations published by The Times that oversight and “shoddy production” at its North Charleston, South Carolina factory will affect the production of the manufacturer’s 787 Dreamliner.

The report comes as the company is the subject of multiple investigations into its 737 MAX, after two tragic crashes involving the aircraft. Boeing has committed to solving the issues surrounding its MCAS system in an upcoming software update.

The article by The Times, published Saturday local time, reported complaints made by several current and former employees at North Charleston, who described the facility as being plagued by “a culture that often valued production speed over quality.”

Workers at the facility have alleged that test flights for the 787 Dreamliner had been taken on planes with faulty parts installed.

Metal debris and tools have been found inside engines, The Times reported.

NBC reported that Brad Zaback, site leader of the South Carolina facility and general manager of Boeing’s 787 program, responded by saying The Times had “distorted information and rehashed old stories”,  which “have long ago been put to rest.”

Former quality manager John Barnett worked for Boeing for 32 years, retiring in 2017. Barnett told The Post and Courier the biggest issue at the North Charleston plant remains the lack of control over tools and parts used in production.

There were “countless instances where parts were being stolen from one aeroplane and installed on an incomplete aeroplane without any documentation, traceability or engineering review,” Barnett said, adding “Parts were being taken out of scrap bins and off of shelves.”

Barnett reportedly filed a whistle-blower complaint in January 2017 with the FAA and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

Zaback responded by telling employees that the planes undergo “rigorous quality inspections” and “perform exceptionally well in service for our valued aeroplane customers around the world,” NBC reported.

Boeing produces its Dreamliner in North Charleston and in Everett, Washington, north of Seattle. The report by The Times examined the South Carolina facility, acknowledging that “there is no evidence that the problems in South Carolina have led to any major safety incidents.”

NBC reported that Zaback had invited The Times to visit the South Carolina factory. The Times had declined.

Danielle Rhoades Ha, The New York Times’ vice president for communications, said Boeing made its offer of a tour on Friday and that the newspaper declined to delay its scheduled publication on Saturday, NBC reported.

Rhodes Ha said Boeing declined to make executives at the plant available for on-the-record interviews.

SEE WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING

Leave a Reply

Tourism

Federal govt announces “most significant” insolvency reforms in 30 years to help save struggling small businesses

Is your business on its last legs? Find some relief in this major announcement by the federal government.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

Crystalbrook to take over boutique Brisbane hotel

The independent hospitality company has gone all arty-farty in expanding its east coast footprint.

Share

CommentComments

Cruise

WATCH: Dream Cruises produces delightfully cringeworthy safety video

Dream Cruises has taken a leaf out of the airline playbook by turning its safety instructions into a fun video. It’s overly cheesy, but kinda cute.

Share

CommentComments

Travel Agents

MTA agent wins coveted spot on Dutch famil

With the famil stopping in Amsterdam along the way, you’d hope this agent will remember to pack some extra-clear eye drops and plenty of snacks.

Share

CommentComments

Wholesalers

Collette releases 2021/22 travel guide with seven new tours

Tell your clients to get ready to gorge themselves on arancini and caponata because three of the seven new trips involve the jewel of the Italian south: Sicily!

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Qantas scraps Wallabies sponsorship, makes nearly $1m selling fully-stocked bar carts

We’ve mixed the good news with the bad here in this Qantas story, so get ready to smile and frown.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

Hotel Wrap: Crowne Plazas ready to return, W Brisbane’s Extreme WOW Suite + MORE

This week’s Hotel Wrap is so huge that we’ve nicknamed it ‘Goliath’. However, that’s not to suggest you should start slingshotting stones at it if your name is David.

Share

CommentComments

Cruise

Norwegian co-founder and cruise titan Knut Kloster dies

Kloster was not only a titan of the cruise industry, but also a humanitarian and environmentalist.

Share

CommentComments

Travel Agents

Flight Centre fills Infinity Holidays void, opening up The Travel Junction to all agents

As part of its plan to streamline its product support areas, Flight Centre will use TTJ to service Infinity’s old clients, plus some cheeky new ones.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Qantas workers likely to receive thousands in unpaid wages after airline loses JobKeeper court case

The Flying Kangaroo’s cost-saving targets just became a little harder to hit after this court decision.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

These are the world’s most complained about attractions

All up, people have spent more than 17 days complaining about the landmark that made the top of this list. That’s a lot of negative Nancies.

Share

CommentComments

Wholesalers

TTC commits to new sustainability goals, plans to be carbon-neutral by 2030

Meanwhile, we’re reducing our carbon footprint by strapping a tiny solar panel to our office dog. We’re not sure what’s it’s powering, but he looks very cute.

Share

CommentComments