The New York Times reports:
Boeing employees mocked federal rules, talked about deceiving regulators and joked about potential flaws in the 737 Max as it was being developed, according to over a hundred pages of internal messages delivered Thursday to congressional investigators.
“I still haven’t been forgiven by God for the covering up I did last year,” one of the employees said in messages from 2018, apparently in reference to interactions with the Federal Aviation Administration.
The most damaging messages included conversations among Boeing pilots and other employees about software issues and other problems with flight simulators for the Max, a plane later involved in two accidents, in late 2018 and early 2019, that killed 346 people and threw the company into chaos.
The messages also show how the company pushed to reduce the scope of mandatory training for pilots to fly the new aircraft in order to cut costs. Regulators ultimately agreed to only mandate computer-based training, rather than full simulator training, for pilots with experience flying another model, the 737 NG. “You can be away from an NG for 30 years and still be able to jump into a MAX? LOVE IT!!” a Boeing marketing employee said in an email..
The messages corroborate what has been trickling out for months: Boeing was playing fast and loose with passenger safety despite worrying indicators. “We regret the content of these communications, and apologize to the F.A.A., Congress, our airline customers and to the flying public for them,” Boeing said in a statement to Congress about the newly disclosed messages.