If you’ve turned on the news recently or kept up with the headlines, then you’ve seen the worrying stories about the faulty Boeing 737 MAX planes. Not only have more than one of these models of planes crashed shortly after takeoff, resulting in hundreds of deaths, but it may also be the case that Boeing was involved in covering up a huge mistake for the sake of their profits.
A grand jury in Washington D.C. is currently examining the process of safety certification to see if Boeing may have lied about how safe the 737 MAX planes were. As of this writing, two of the planes have crashed since October and have worried millions of travelers.
Now the FBI has announced that they’re joining the investigation into Boeing’s potential criminal activity and are ready to go all in. The FBI wants to share its considerable resources to assist the inquiry that the U.S. Department of Transportation agents have already begun.
As it happens, the FBI possesses a field office in Seattle that is close to Boeing’s 7373 manufacturing plant in Renton, WA. They also plan to use FBI resources to examine the offices of Boeing and the Federal Aviation Administration to make sure there were no illegal practices going on between the two groups or if they were conspiring to put faulty planes through safety certification with the undue examination.
Federal Aviation Administration employees were the ones responsible for certifying the safety of Boeing’s 737 MAX planes.
The investigation started after information was obtained from the Lion Air 737 MAX 8 crash that occurred not long after takeoff from the airport in Jakarta on October 29. That crash killed 189 people as the plane’s computer system dove the aircraft directly into the water.
As the investigation continues to widen, the FBI wishes to retain some anonymity. That’s why they, along with the Justice Department and the Transportation Department have all declined to comment on the investigation. They have neither confirmed nor denied the investigation and Boeing is not saying anything.
As part of a process to streamline certification, FAA managers forced their engineers to delegate more of the certification process to Boeing.
The Seattle Times also published a story that found how there were flaws in the original safety analysis that Boeing created internally and then handed over to the FAA. It could have been an innocent mistake, or it could have been corporate greed in action, which has since resulted in the deaths of hundreds of innocent people.
Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao is also getting involved. She asked the department’s inspector general to start a formal audit of how the 737 MAX planes were certified. Elaine wants to know how the planes were certified from start to finish to see if there was a flaw somewhere in the process or if someone did something to speed faulty planes through the system and get them into airports and in the air. This audit is not related to the potential criminal investigation as it is just administrative in nature. Nonetheless, it may offer insight into untoward activity.