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Head of Boeing's 737 Max program leaving company amid safety concerns

The news comes after an incident last month in which an Alaska Airlines jetliner experienced a blown-out panel.
Head of Boeing's 737 Max program leaving company amid safety concerns
Posted at 12:08 PM, Feb 21, 2024
and last updated 2024-02-21 15:26:34-05

Ed Clark, the head of Boeing’s 737 Max passenger jet program is leaving the company.

According to an email Boeing CEO Stan Deal sent to employees on Wednesday, Clark is leaving the company after 18 years and will be replaced by Katie Ringgold as vice president and general manager.

The email also states that the leadership changes are taking place so that the company can ensure "every airplane we deliver meets or exceeds all quality and safety requirements." Boeing has named Elizabeth Lund as the senior vice president for BCA Quality to focus on quality control and safety. 

The news comes amid Boeing facing pressure from regulators, airlines, and Congress after an incident last month in which an Alaska Airlines jetliner experienced a blown-out window and fuselage damage shortly after takeoff over Oregon. It was later confirmed that bolts crucial for securing a panel to the frame of a Boeing 737 Max 9 were missing before the panel detached.

Additionally, earlier this month an employee of Boeing supplier Spirit AeroSystems alerted the company that two holes from the Boeing 737 Max may not have been drilled exactly to Boeing's requirements.

The Max fleet overall has faced scrutiny in recent years. In 2018 and 2019, two Boeing Max 8 passenger planes suffered crashes months apart, killing a total of 346 people. The problem was pinned to the plane's Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System, or MCAS.


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