Boeing has agreed to pay a $12 million fine in a settlement with the Federal Aviation Administration. The settlement comes after the FAA found 13 quality and standards issues stretching over several years.
The FAA cited two cases in which it initiated “enforcement actions” against Boeing. In July 2012, the agency proposed that Boeing pay a $13.6 million fine for failing to submit service instructions on time for installing equipment to reduce fuel tank flammability on 383 U.S.-registered Boeing 747s and 757s. A year later, it proposed fining the manufacturer $2.75 million for being slow in correcting the use of nonconforming fasteners on 777s. Neither situation created unsafe conditions, the FAA said.
Situations that did not rise to the level of an enforcement action “involved allegations of delays in submitting required safety information, production quality control problems and failures to implement corrective actions for those production problems,” the agency stated in a press release.
“Compliance requires all certificate holders to develop and implement internal controls that ensure they’re operating according to the highest standards,” said FAA Administrator Michael Huerta. “Boeing has agreed to implement improvements in its design, planning, production and maintenance planning processes, and has already implemented several of these improvements.”
Boeing committed under the settlement agreement to implement a safety management system plan across the company’s activities, improve its internal auditing and supplier management processes, and “meet progressively more stringent performance metrics in the quality and timeliness of its written submissions to the FAA.” Among other obligations, the manufacturer must implement improvements to ensure that assemblies continue to conform to an aircraft’s type design. Employees who exercise stamping approval authority must undergo mandatory training every two years. Also, Boeing must report to the FAA “at least annually” about the effectiveness of its regulatory compliance activities.
Responding to the FAA’s announcement, the manufacturer said that it “appreciates the dedication of both the Federal Aviation Administration and Boeing personnel who worked to reach the agreement announced today…Boeing believes that this agreement not only fairly resolves announced and potential civil penalty actions—most of which date back years, and two of which were previously announced in 2012 and 2013—but also will further enhance Boeing’s self-correcting quality and compliance systems.
“Many of the improvements listed in the agreement have already been implemented or are in the process of implementation,” Boeing added.
Sportact Editors and Wire Services