Is the 737 Max safe?

Image: Boeing

We have all heard of the 737. If you have never heard of it, then you are living under a rock. The 737 Max is Boeing’s latest aircraft. The 737 has been rocking around since April 9th, 1967.

Image: Boeing

The 737 Max family, made in 2015, is a big mess. The MCAS Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System caused automated nosedives, which led to the plane pitching its nose down and slamming into the ocean in 2018. The same thing happened over land in 2019, killing 346 people combined. Because of events like this and the Alaska Airlines 737 Max 9 door blowout, the 737 Max looks very unsafe, but I assure you it is a safe plane to fly. Here’s why.

The media is the problem. Why do you ask? Well, there’s proof. Remember the United 777 that lost one of its tires on takeoff? Well, the media said it was Boeing’s fault, but really, United did not do proper maintenance. Plus, Boeing does not make 777s anymore until the 777X comes out. Another example is the SouthWest 737-800NG, which had its engine cover flung open mid-flight. 

The media explained that it was Boeing’s fault, but really, it was Southwest’s fault. Also, Boeing no longer produces the 737NG. 

There’s also Airbus (Boeing’s competitor). Air France flight 296Q was part of the Habsheim airshow and was making a low pass with passengers onboard. They went below 100 ft (30m), but the plane went lower. They saw the trees and activated the TOGA (Takeoff/go-around switch), but it was too late, and the plane hit the trees. It was caused by a pilot error, and it was not Airbus’s fault.

You may have heard of McDonnell Douglas, the plane manufacturer that was Boeing’s main competitor before Airbus became a major player. American Airlines asked McDonnell Douglas and Lockheed to design a three-engine passenger jet. McDonnell Douglas made the DC-10 first, and Lockheed made the L-1011 TriStar. Both aircraft were highly capable, but the DC-10 had Flaws in the Cargo doors.

There were two major incidents. On American Airlines, The Cargo Door malfunctioned, but due to the presence of floor vents, the plane maintained control and landed safely. However, on Turkish Airlines Flight 981, when the cargo door blew out, the lack of floor vents caused a catastrophic lack of control, severing crucial flight control wires. This accident had no survivors, leading to a lawsuit pointed at McDonnell Douglas. The company faced financial difficulties in later years and ultimately merged with Boeing in 1997.

Airbus could buy Boeing or continue making planes under a US government contract. But for now, Boeing has the maximum number of planes being built. At the time of writing, a Boeing 767 being used by FedEx landed without landing gear up, and a Be20 landed at Newcastle, Australia, with no landing gear.

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