- A 2016 instant message exchange was had between Mark Forkner and Patrik Gustavsson, two of Boeing’s chief technical pilots at the time
- They discussed the new automated system on the 737 MAX known as MCAS and that it was having problems during simulated flights
- Forkrner said he ‘basically lied to the regulators’ because this occurred as the FAA was determining if the 737 MAX was safe for passengers
- Boeing handed over the ‘concerning’ 2016 instant messages to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on Thursday
- FAA says that Boeing was aware of the messages for months but withheld them
- Boeing shares plunged as much as four percent in afternoon trading on Friday
Shocking instant messages between two Boeing pilots suggest the company misled the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) about a key safety system on the troubled 737 MAX planes.
In the 2016 exchange, Mark Forkner and Patrik Gustavsson, two of Boeing’s chief technical pilots at the time, were discussing new automated system known as MCAS and that it was having problems during simulated flights.
In one message, Forkner writes: ‘Granted, I suck at flying, but even this was egregious.’
He then writes, in reference to the FAA being in the process of certifying the 737 MAX as safe to carry passengers: ‘So I basically lied to the regulators (unknowingly)’ reported The Wall Street Journal.
‘It wasn’t a lie. No one told us that was the case,’ Gustavsson replies.
Despite these messages, Boeing didn’t alert the FAA to the problem until 2019, after two fatal crashes had already occurred.