4 Things The Media Got Majorly Wrong About the Boeing Max 8 Crash
Wall Street Journal / Youtube
On March 10, 2019, news of the Ethiopian Airline crash that killed 157 people rocked the world. But it wasn’t just because it was a tragedy – the incident showed clear similarities to the Lion Air crash in Indonesia that happened just 5 months before. News quickly traveled that both crashes had happened in a Boeing 737 Max 8. The fact that both had crashed so soon after takeoff and had struggled to keep their noses from pointing down sparked major global discussion about Boeing’s new plane, pilot training, and air travel in general.
But with all the cover came some massive blunders. Here’s some of the most questionable information that was put out:
4. Was The Pilot Trained?
Ethiopian Airlines strongly refutes all the baseless and factually incorrect allegations written in the @washingtonpost dated March 21, 2019. pic.twitter.com/O9ayncVw5M
— Ethiopian Airlines (@flyethiopian) March 22, 2019
Ethiopian Airlines had some sharp criticisms for what they deemed false reporting by two American media outlets. According to them, the pilot had in fact completed all of the necessary training.
“We urge all concerned to refrain from making such uninformed, incorrect, irresponsible and misleading statements during the period of the accident investigation.” – Ethiopian Airlines Statement
3. Well, They’re Not Wrong…
If you drive a car, you’re probably aware that you can’t get very far without fuel. The same applies to planes, whether it’s a Boeing 777, a Boeing 737, or a Corsair. While this isn’t wrong, we’re not so sure it’s newsworthy.
2. Ethiopian Airlines Was Africa’s Best Carrier Before The Crash?
Fixed it for you. pic.twitter.com/wK5p2vQOv0
— Anwar O. Adushe (@AnwarAdushe) March 13, 2019
A Financial Times article implied that Ethiopian Airlines lost some faith after the March 10 crash. Despite the incident, however, the airline is still in good standing and holding onto its reputation as the best.
1. How About That Scary Video From Inside The Plane?
A video has been shared countless times with the claim that it’s from the last minutes inside the Ethiopian Airlines plane before it crashed. Is it? While it is definitely from an Ethiopian Airlines flight, a quick search will reveal that the video is from a recent Ethiopian Airlines flight to Toronto on a Boeing 787 Dreamliner.
So What Do We Know Then?
The Ethiopian Airlines crash is still fresh off the press, so if you’re looking for hard facts, you’ll simply have to wait until the black boxes have been analyzed. Everything else is speculation at this point. However, here’s what has come out of this so far:
- Black Box Investigation -The black boxes are currently being analyzed by the National Transportation Safety Board, France’s Air Accident Investigation Agency, and the European Union Aviation Safety Agency
- Safety Features To Be Added – Two safety features that Boeing previously charged extra for are now being added on as standard for the 737 Max 8. The two features are an angle-of-attack indicator which shows the sensors’ reading and a disagree light that activates when the sensors don’t agree with each other.
- MCAS – The Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System, the suspected culprit, is a computerized system designed to prevent the nose from stalling. Some pilots have reported issues with the system and it is currently being updated.
- US Senate Hearing – There will be a hearing on the FAA’s approval of the Boeing 737 Max jets on March 27, 2019.