A report published by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has found “inadequate and confusing” implementation of the safety culture at Boeing, adding further pressure to the company which is already under additional scrutiny over quality control concerns. 

The report lays out the findings of an expert panel’s review of the safety culture and management systems as part of the organisation designation authorisation (ODA) programme that allows companies to approve certain airworthiness criteria of their aircraft. 

The panel reported that it had observed a “disconnect between Boeing’s senior management and other members of the organisation on safety culture”, including a lack of understanding from all employees of their role in the safety management systems of the company. 

Additionally, the panel reported a lack of awareness for safety-related metrics “at all levels of the organisation” and a “constant state of change” for procedures and training. 

The report questioned whether Boeing’s systems allowed open communication and non-retaliation.

In response to the report, a Boeing spokesperson said: “We transparently supported the panel’s review and appreciate their work. We’ve taken important steps to foster a safety culture that empowers and encourages all employees to share their voice[s]. 

How well do you really know your competitors?

Access the most comprehensive Company Profiles on the market, powered by GlobalData. Save hours of research. Gain competitive edge.

Company Profile – free sample

Thank you!

Your download email will arrive shortly

Not ready to buy yet? Download a free sample

We are confident about the unique quality of our Company Profiles. However, we want you to make the most beneficial decision for your business, so we offer a free sample that you can download by submitting the below form

By GlobalData
Visit our Privacy Policy for more information about our services, how we may use, process and share your personal data, including information of your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications. Our services are intended for corporate subscribers and you warrant that the email address submitted is your corporate email address.

“But there is more work to do. We will carefully review the panel’s assessment and learn from their findings, as we continue our comprehensive efforts to improve our safety and quality programs.” 

Following the publication of the report, the FAA will review its contents and determine the next steps on its recommendations, while Boeing will be expected to publish an action plan on the recommendations within six months. 

Recommendations given by the panel include conducting periodic safety culture surveys, establishing a tri-party Aviation Safety Action Programme (ASAP) with the FAA and the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) as seen at Boeing’s factories in Washington, and creating an investigation process that is “sufficiently autonomous” to provide confidence in non-retaliatory measures. 

The FAA panel’s warnings about safety at Boeing come as the aircraft manufacturer is already being subjected to increased production inspections by the administration following the door plug blowout on an Alaska Airlines flight and has just announced a shakeup of the leadership for its 737 MAX programme in response to concerns around quality control.