After meeting with a group of senators on Capitol Hill on Wednesday morning, Boeing CEO Dave Calhoun told reporters that the corporation doesn’t “put airplanes in the air that we don’t have 100% confidence in.”
His comments were in response to the gaggle of reporters that approached the chief executive moments after a meeting with Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., about what message he had for passengers that were concerned about flying with Boeing.
“I’m here today in the spirit of transparency,” Calhoun said. “Number one, [to] recognize the seriousness of what you just asked; number two, to share everything I can with our Capitol Hill interests and answer all their questions because they have a lot of them.”
BOEING CEO TO MEET WITH SENATORS AMID 737 MAX 9 GROUNDING
When asked how he plans to win customers back, Calhoun told FOX Business: “We believe in our airplanes … we have confidence in the safety of our airplanes. And that’s what all of this is about. And we fully understand the gravity.”
Warner’s office confirmed to FOX Business that Calhoun was scheduled to meet with him Wednesday morning as the company contends with fallout from the 737 Max 9 incident this month when a door plug blew off during an Alaska Airlines flight. Calhoun will meet with Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, on Thursday, the senator’s office confirmed.
Immediately following the incident, Calhoun initiated an all-hands meeting with staff. During the meeting, he said the company acknowledged its mistake and would approach this latest incident with “complete transparency every step of the way.”
DELTA BOEING PLANE LOSES NOSE TIRE MOMENTS BEFORE TAKEOFF: ‘ROLLED OFF THE RUNWAY’
It’s the latest woe for the 737 Max family, which has been involved in incidents before. The 737 Max 8 model made headlines in 2018 and 2019 when it was involved in a pair of fatal crashes that occurred just months apart.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) immediately grounded every 737 Max 9 plane with a door plug until it can be determined that each plane can safely return to operation.
It also announced requirements for a rigorous inspection and maintenance process before it contemplates any further steps in the process to return all 171 planes to service.
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The first 40 inspections that are part of that process are now complete, and the FAA plans to thoroughly review the data.
In the meantime, the FAA has simultaneously launched an investigation into Boeing as well as its manufacturing practices and production lines, including those involving subcontractor Spirit AeroSystems.
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