In the past five months, two Boeing 737 Max plane models have crashed, killing hundreds in the process. The first incident was in October, on Lion Air Flight 610, where 189 people died. The second was Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 on March 10 th , where 17 were killed.
There has been much speculation regarding what actually caused these incidents. A large amount of evidences points to the automated system used to avoid stalling. Specifically, in the Ethiopian crash, it was reported that the captain and first officers were unable to prevent the aircraft from nose diving, even though they followed procedure.
The faulty sensors of the Boeing 737 have been under intense scrutiny. The sensing system, called the MCAS, is suspected to have incorrectly pushed the front of the plane downwards. Investigators are still looking into what exactly led to the faults.
As a result of these crashes, aviation regulators internationally have decided to ground the plane model. There were thousands of unfilled orders of the model, but after the crashes, orders significantly dropped, and the company’s revenue dipped. The company has run into criticism on the design and approval of the plane.
On May 4th, a military-chartered Boeing 737, similar to the 737 Max, slid into a river in Jacksonville, Florida. None of the 143 passengers were killed, however the pets on board have not been retrieved.
In international travel, one will always consider safety as a factor. Especially in air travel, even when the risk is relatively low, the possibility of major errors in passenger safety measures will always be a major concern.