Boeing has agreed to pay at least $12 million and make more than a dozen internal management changes to settle a string of complaints by the US Federal Aviation Administration over failing to follow through on safety enforcement actions.
Boeing faces another $24 million in additional fines to the Treasury Department if it fails to comply with the terms of the agreement over the next five years, the FAA says.
“This agreement is an important step toward ensuring that Boeing fully meets all applicable standards gong forward,” says Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx in a statement issued on 22 December.
Internally, Boeing has agreed to adopt a set of internal reforms designed to quicken the detection and reporting of compliance violations of FAA regulations.
The set of reforms include adopting the FAA’s safety analysis models to detect regulatory violations, assessing the effectiveness of internal auditing systems, and auditing suppliers for compliance as well.
Boeing also has agreed to audit all product lines at least three times each year and one fabrication site each year for the next five years, the FAA says.
Boeing says it is now “actively working on the areas identified in the agreement and see this as another way to continually improve our compliance system”.
The agreement ends an at least four-year-long enforcement drive by the FAA. It began in 2012 when the agency proposed fining Boeing $13.57 million for missing a key deadline. The FAA had required Boeing to develop instructions for operators to make fuel tanks in all commercial aircraft inert by 27 December 2010. Airbus complied with the deadline, but Boeing missed the mark on the 747 and 757 and failed to alert the FAA, according to agency documents.
In 2013, the FAA proposed another $2.75 million penalty after Boeing missed deadlines for correcting a non-conforming fastener problem on the 777 fleet.
In addition to those two cases, there were another 11 “matters” opened during the “last several years” that did not lead to a formal case, the FAA says.
Agency officials declined to elaborate on the details of the 11 other issues under investigation, but offered a general description.
“We don’t discuss details of investigations that never result in formal enforcement actions,” the agency says. “The uninitiated matters involved allegations of delays in submitting required safety information, production quality control problems, and failures to implement corrective actions for those production problems.”
Source: Cirium Dashboard