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Boeing CEO and string of top executives resign amid ongoing safety scandals

Simon Calder’s Travel

Boeing CEO Dave Calhoun and two top executives have announced that they will step down from their positions at the company following a string of incidents that have sparked major safety concerns.

In a memo posted to the company’s website on Monday, Mr Calhoun said the Alaska Airlines flight 1282 incident – in which a panel on the side of a plane blew out mid-flight – was a “watershed moment” for Boeing, and that he had decided to leave the company at the end of the year. He emphasised the need for a “transparent” approach in future.

“We must continue to respond to this accident with humility and complete transparency. We also must inculcate a total commitment to safety and quality at every level of our company,” Mr Calhoun wrote.

Reflecting on his time as CEO of Boeing as “the greatest privilege” of his life, Mr Calhoun said the company was going to fix what is no longer working to help rebuild its reputation for safety.

In addition to Mr Calhoun’s departure, Boeing’s chair, Larry Kellner, and the CEO and president of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Stan Deal, will also step down.

Boeing CEO Dave Calhoun speaks to reporters as he departs from a meeting at the office of senator Mark Warner


The news comes after a string of high-profile accidents led to public distrust in Boeing aircraft, specifically the 737 Max.

In January, a door panel blew out on a 737 Max during an Alaska Airlines flight over Portland, Oregon. Photos and videos from the incident went viral and caused panic among passengers. Ultimately the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board opened investigations, which led to the grounding of all Boeing 737 Max 9 aircraft.

Preliminary investigations found that several critical bolts had been missing from the panel before take-off, calling into question Boeing’s manufacturing practices.

But Boeing’s problems did not start or end with the Alaska Airlines incident. The company has been embroiled in previous safety concerns over the 737 Max 8, after two of the planes crashed in 2018 and 2019 resulting in the deaths of all passengers and crew.

Though Boeing has taken responsibility for some of the safety concerns and begun implementing changes to assure the public that they will remedy them, people have still expressed scepticism about flying on Boeing-manufactured…

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