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NTSB to hear sworn testimonies at public hearing into 737-9 door plug blowout

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) will hear sworn testimonies at a two-day investigative hearing into the Alaska Airlines Boeing 737 MAX 9 door plug blowout on January 5, 2024.  

The investigative hearing, announced on March 12, 2024, will hear from witnesses as the NTSB gathers evidence to “determine the facts, circumstances, and probable cause of the transportation accident”. 

The hearing, which takes place on August 6 and 7, 2024, will be broadcast through a livestream and is open to the public, however, only NTSB board members, investigators and scheduled witnesses can participate.  

The NTSB is authorized to compel testimony, through use of a subpoena, if necessary. 

According to the NTSB’s website, witnesses will be called if they hold information that the safety board has not already discovered, needs clarification or “should be publicly vetted in an open forum”. 

Other developments 

A six-week audit, carried out by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) of Boeing following the door plug incident found that out of 89 product audits the planemaker passed 56 tests and failed 33, according to the New York Times.   

The article’s findings were based on an internal FAA slide presentation sourced by the publication. 

Spirit AeroSystems facilities were also subjected to the FAA audit of which, out of 13 product audits, seven failed.  

The slide presentation included an instance in which a Spirit employee reportedly used a hotel key card to check a door seal. 

In response to the audit, Boeing’s Head of Commercial Aviation Stan Deal told employees in a leaked memo that most of the instances of non-compliance “involved not following our approved processes and procedure”. 

Boeing Commercial Airplanes CEO Stan Deal updates employees on activities in response to the FAA audit and ODA review.

— Jon Ostrower (@jonostrower) March 12, 2024

“We have used your feedback, and those from our regulator and customers, to take immediate actions to strengthen our safety and quality. These actions are central to a comprehensive plan we will soon deliver to the FAA,” Deal wrote. 

Boeing has been given 90 days to respond to the FAA audit and a secondary 50-page report compiled by an expert panel that was published on February 26, 2024. 

Alaska Airlines flight 1282 suffered a rapid decompression when a left mid-cabin door plug separated from the aircraft at 16,000 feet on January 5, 2024.  

The post NTSB to hear sworn testimonies at public hearing into 737-9 door plug blowout appeared first on AeroTime.

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