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Report from Congressional panel slams Boeing and FAA over MAX crashes

The exterior of the Boeing facility is shown at Boeing Field on July 28, 2020 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by David Ryder/Getty Images)

A new report from the House Transportation and Infrastructure committee slams Boeing and the FAA over the two deadly 737 MAX crashes.

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The report is a condemnation of Boeing and the way it runs its business, claiming the company went from a great engineering firm to a shareholder darling interested in profits over safety. More than 200 pages, the House committee report criticizes Boeing and the FAA for the way it developed the MAX and certified it for passenger flights.

It faults Boeing for cost cutting and corner shaving in its race with Airbus to get its new plane into service. The report says the company knew pilots would have problems with the new flight control systems, but assumed pilots would be able to handle it. It accuses Boeing of intentionally hiding information about the new software system from the FAA and it blasts the FAA for giving Boeing too much control over the certification process and trusting Boeing’s voices over its own.

Oregon representative Peter DeFazio, who chairs the committee, said, “This is a tragedy that never should have happened. It could have been prevented, and we’re going to take steps in our legislation to see that it never happens again.”

The report says the FAA did not do its job to protect the public.

Boeing released a statement Wednesday saying it has cooperated fully and extensively with Congress and that it is hard at work to strengthen the safety culture at the company and rebuild trust with the public.

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