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  • 38

Despite crashes, Boeing proposes no simulator training for 737 MAX pilots

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Boeing's proposal to bring back the 737 Max has included a computer-based training program that, like requirements before two crashes involving the aircraft, does not involve hands-on simulator training before allowing pilots to resume flying the troubled aircraft once it is no longer grounded, CNN has learned. Following the crashes involving Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines in October and March in which 346 people died, some pilots and aviation consultants criticized Boeing for the… (www.cnn.com) Altro...

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gcottay
Wow. Boeing is digging deeper and deeper. It's way past time for a change of top leadership.
rwf1001
Yeah, George, I'm leaning that same way in my thinking too. Once those planes get the ok to go back in the air, well, first of all, I wonder if pilots will even want to fly them, without training first, on the new systems
chalet
chalet 2
Haste makes waste, one more accident due to lack of sim training specially by airlines from Third World countries (which arguably are far less well trained than their counterparts in the US, Europe and certain Pacific Rim Airlines) and this cheap thinking could cost Boeing thousands or million times the savings of no sim training.
gwatersvic
Agree. But I note that Ethiopian Airlines HAVE a simulator AND according to reports the simulator does not accurately replicate the behaviour of MCAS. But then, Boeing never told airlines about MCAS or provided training that would experience it in the Sim. Rather a pigs breakfast which Boeing need to correct completely before confidence can be restored. The FAA needs to stop taking Boeing's word for what they say they've done and do a lot more checking on what has actually been done. I'm sure all this is being discussed at length by the international bodies and I can't see the 737 MAX being re-certified by them all in 2019, lets see.
chalet
chalet 1
It was about time that the Boeing-FAA almost incestuous relationship had to end one day. Too bad that the lives of 360 innoncent people had this so necessary results.
jbermo
jbermo 14
Because the Max has now become a major public issue, why not just simply mandate $$ simulator training (regardless if unnecessary) and show the public that time and money will not factor in restoring pilot confidence.
Greg77FA
Greg77FA 9
Why no training? Why not put everyone at ease? Fools they are. All concerned about $ and delays.
rapidwolve
rapidwolve 4
Transport Canada is seriously pushing for it up here...that and the "approved software updates" will be getting a heck of a going over. " Transport Canada will review Boeing’s software changes to the Max and the FAA’s certification of them through a “rigorous” validation process, which may require further work by the company or FAA or both. “We have full confidence in the FAA and the process they have in place, however things do occur."
1 thing I do question in a reporter's question to FAA's Elwell. He stated "“No individual country stood up and said we need to have simulator training” From what I understand, a few did mention "we should definitely include simulator training"
lynx318
lynx318 0
There is computer based training update in the article. IF the Max MCAS is corrected to work safely with all redundancies active then it should be enough for pilots to update their training on this craft. The part of this that bothers me immensely is this line "a short, self-administered online course". THAT is a big NO and likely why this mess occurred in the first place. This should be a properly supervised course.
gwatersvic
We must provide for the case that MCAS fails again because nothing is fully covered against faults - software, sensors, hydraulics, hardware or damage of any sort. So its good to let pilots experience the situation when they need to a) overcome the surprise factor of when it goes wrong b) diagnose exactly what has happened c) recall the CORRECT memory checklist under pressure d) execute the actions on the checklist QUICKLY e) undertake good communication with the other pilot to verify and help e) experience the manual trim wheel mechanical resistance at various airspeeds f) experience simulated multiple failures and worst case scenarios. I regard this as essential preparation for when something goes wrong, which it inevitably will and probably at the worst possible time, like just after takeoff as in the two MCAS accidents. In these cases pilots perform under extreme stress. I think it is best to practice in a Sim rather than the shock when it happens while airborne and trying to remember that "short supplemental training presentation" about "something around MCAS that Boeing fixed a while back", but has just failed (maybe in a different way) again. We are all highly aware of the "MCAS issue" right now, but what about new pilots in two years time?
gwatersvic
Yes this all assumes that Boeing, as recently reported, will be updating the Sims with the full new MCAS logic so that failure scenarios can be accurately reproduced and practiced. Clearly the 737 MAX flies very well when everything is functioning normally. I'd rather be surprised in the Sim than shocked in the sky.
lynx318
lynx318 1
With reference to another sqwawk...
"Even the chief technical pilot who made the request might not have fully understood MCAS, as he primarily used flight simulators that didn't completely replicate the system."
https://flightaware.com/squawks/view/1/7_days/popular_new/73438/Boeing_reportedly_left_engineers_officials_unaware_of_737_Max_changes
Hopefully the simulators are programmed 'correctly' then!
DGR54Rathborne
We , as a society have reached the point , where we all have been led to believe that Technology can correct and do anything . If you are a flying wing or a type of fighter jet that has no right to fly except with automation ,that is fine , as you are a combat aircraft . But to subject revenue passengers and crews , to an aircraft that has an inherent balance problem , and then to try to control it with MCAS and further patches and re-writes seems just dangerous . When the automation ( MCAS ) is reacting so fast that the Flt Crew can't keep up to it , bad things will continue to happen . And i do not think that in the midst of an emergency , the crew will have time to refer to a check list . I suppose it will come down to how much risk one will except as a Flt Crew , Flt attendants and passengers . What level of Chicken do you wish to try ?
joeszematowicz
Simulator training with low speed/low altitude and high speed/high altitude situations should be required to regain the public's confidence. Otherwise, Boeing's message is share price over safety.
Skistar
I'm in agreement with Greg77FA. How can they let pilots fly this aircraft without proper simulator training? I don't care how much it costs. How much is a life worth?
E1craZ4life
Or hundreds of them?
E1craZ4life
A lack of simulator training on an updated version of the 737 was also a factor in the crash of British Midland Flight 92.

[This comment has been downvoted. Show anyway.]

rapidwolve
rapidwolve 11
Really?..WOW..Why don't you just stop posting?? You can't seem to do any research at all and place 100% blame on 2 sets of flight deck personal, who can no longer defend their actions, in ANY OF your postings!
"A simulator test flown as part of recurrent training by 1 U.S.based 737 MAX crew that re-created a critical part of the crashed Ethiopian flight. The simulation indicated that the pilots “faced a near-impossible task of getting their 737 MAX 8 under control.”
Starting from the point where the Ethiopian pilots hit the cut-off switches and stopped MCAS from operating, the U.S. MAX crew tried in the simulator to recover. Even though the U.S. crew performed the simulator experiment at a normal speed of 250 knots instead of the more than 350 knots of the Ethiopian jet, the forces on the jet’s tail still prevented them from moving the manual wheel in the cockpit that would have corrected the nose-down attitude."
"In another instance, thou the "roller coaster" has NOT been in the pilots manual for decades, using it in a simulator by another US. MAX crew saved the aircraft BUT they lost 8,000 feet of altitude in the process. The flight crew of the Ethiopian crash would not have been able to save it because that aircraft never got above 8,000 feet when the issues started."
"A preliminary statement suggested the crew left the throttles at takeoff power because they intended to continue to climb and were hampered by the nose-down commands of MCAS." Remember...they did not take off a sea level or even 2,500 ft...they took off at over 7,000 ft above sea level.
juancarlos776
linbb, you are bored, we get it!
lynx318
lynx318 1
Oh goody, the catalyst troll is back. NOT!
rwf1001
God, I hope the FAA and Boeing know what they're doing!
CurtisLyman
It’s early in the process. If BA’s management remains strong, they will find the solutions to ensure aircraft safety and to ensure passenger safety through pilot training. If not, and if there are more deaths, then a firestorm of regulators, lawyers, and market shorts will effect economic justice.
patpylot
damn the expense boeing, just pretend a bit you care about the humans who fly on your aircraft and the pilots who carry them around the world. Boeing ought to be ranked at the lowest part of the charts on consumer confidence, so, why not call for lots and lots of simulator training and lots and lots of hands-on stick training, so that potential passengers on the Boeing Bucking Bronco can have some semblence of confidence in the latest iteration of the 737.Perhaps then the load factors will begin at 50%, and over time creep up to 80% or more. My butt will not add to the load factor soon
Trav1s
Trav1s 0
Yikes. Talk about mismanagement.
cgraydon
Shame on Boeing , if they screw this up they are done, wonder what the share holders are thinking about this !
jmanley20
John Manley -3
Is this a joke? Do you really think addl sim training would be necessary...?

Im guessing everyone reading this has zero idea what runaway trim is and how to counteract/alleviate it... From a flight crew perspective, all you need to know as a pilot is the existence of MCAS, which AOA sensor it goes off of, and if it's faulty, to apply same procedure as runaway trim. As simple as that. Now from the Boeing side of things, I have zero idea why they decided to make MCAS go off of just the CA side AOA sensor.... absolutely unreal that the largest and most known aircraft manufacturer actually thought less would be more. You need to have more TEM to ensure the swiss cheese holes are filled....
rapidwolve
rapidwolve 3
WOW..we, as many of us are pilots both fixed wing and rotor craft, have no idea what runaway trim is? And you have all the answers because you have been in a situation where MCAS took control when it should not have @ 13k ft above sea level? I do have 1 final question...what aircraft do you fly?
sgbelverta
sharon bias -4
In another posting, someone mentioned that simulators for 737's are not that common. There are some for sale. One, on E-Bay, has a price of $115,000. Cruising the Internet, they seem to range from $70,000 to $320,000 depending on features. At the very least, Boeing should buy one for each airline they sold 737Max's to. If they were delivered to the airlines soon, hopefully they could be up and running when the 737Max get's ready to fly again. I admit I don't know the normal time frame to install a simulator, but at this point, the 737Max won't be flying for at least 2 months. Maybe that's enough time.
TorstenHoff
https://flightaware.com/squawks/view/1/recently/popular/73200/Boeing_737_Max_Simulators_Are_in_High_Demand_They_Are_Flawed
JimG4170L
Sharon, the sims that airlines use cost well over $10 million, even used. There are plenty of 737 simulators out there, just not one specific to the MAX, and that is the elephant in the room. Once separate sim training is needed for the MAX, the efficiency of having an umbrella certification for all 737's no longer applies to the MAX, and the benefits of purchasing one decrease.

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