Stories
Slash Boxes
Comments

SoylentNews is people

posted by janrinok on Thursday February 29, @07:47PM   Printer-friendly
from the if-its-boeing-i'm-not-going dept.

Boeing Missing Key Elements of Safety Culture: FAA Report

Employees lack awareness of the basics in reporting safety concerns.

The FAA blamed Boeing for a deficient safety culture in a 50-page report issued on Monday following a public outcry over several safety lapses before the January 5 incident in which a door plug "blew out" from an Alaska Airlines 737 Max 9 in mid-flight.

[....] an expert panel found what it called gaps in Boeing's safety journey and that a majority of employees did not show "skillful awareness" of the concepts of just culture and reporting culture.

Some things from that FAA report linked above:

The Expert Panel observed a disconnect between Boeing's senior management and other members of the organization on safety culture. Interviewees, including ODA [Organization Designation Authorization] (ODA)Unit Members (UM), also questioned whether Boeing's safety reporting systems would function in a way that ensures open communication and non-retaliation. The Expert Panel also observed inadequate and confusing implementation of the five components of a positive safety culture [....]

[....] Boeing safety management systems (SMS) procedures are not structured in a way that ensures all employees understand their role in the company's SMS. The procedures and training are complex and in a constant state of change, creating employee confusion especially among different work sites and employee groups. The Expert Panel also found a lack of awareness of safety-related metrics at all levels of the organization; employees had difficulty distinguishing the differences among various measuring methods, their purpose, and outcomes.

Boeing's restructuring of the management of the ODA unit decreased opportunities for interference and retaliation against UMs, and provides effective organizational messaging regarding independence of UMs. However, the restructuring, while better, still allows opportunities for retaliation to occur, particularly with regards to salary and furlough ranking. This influences the ability of UMs to execute their delegated functions effectively.

It's good as long as they can keep showing profits, increasing stock prices and executive bonuses.


Original Submission

This discussion was created by janrinok (52) for logged-in users only, but now has been archived. No new comments can be posted.
Display Options Threshold/Breakthrough Mark All as Read Mark All as Unread
The Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not responsible for them in any way.
(1)
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Tork on Thursday February 29, @07:54PM (6 children)

    by Tork (3914) Subscriber Badge on Thursday February 29, @07:54PM (#1346839)
    Capitalistic greed in general has a blind-spot for public safety. Gettin' a lil tired of accidents happening because not-getting-caught is a higher priority than doing it right.
    --
    🏳️‍🌈 Proud Ally 🏳️‍🌈
    • (Score: 5, Informative) by DeathMonkey on Thursday February 29, @08:02PM (2 children)

      by DeathMonkey (1380) on Thursday February 29, @08:02PM (#1346841) Journal

      Sigh....and these guys used to be the absolute cream of the crop for quality, safety and even environmental engineering.....

      Just in case you want to watch something really depressing! [wikipedia.org]

      • (Score: -1, Offtopic) by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 01, @03:37PM (1 child)

        by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 01, @03:37PM (#1346974)

        these guys used to be the absolute cream of the crop for quality, safety and even environmental engineering

        ...and then DEI got involved and it's no longer "these guys". It's "xem people".

        The missing element is white guys who knuckle down and do their job year after year and decade after decade to try to maintain middle-class status out of some sense of nobility or religious duty.

        • (Score: -1, Flamebait) by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 01, @11:36PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 01, @11:36PM (#1347024)

          Score! Dunk on woke.

          The reason "white guys" are getting replaced by imported ethnics is because the latter are cheaper, especially if you the training. So instead of stable jobs with knowledgeable "white guys" you have high turnover of Chinese kids that work cheap, don't complain and natively understand corruption (shut your mouth and look the other way). Since they're Good at Math(tm) there's no difference.

    • (Score: 5, Funny) by Snotnose on Thursday February 29, @08:12PM

      by Snotnose (1623) on Thursday February 29, @08:12PM (#1346842)

      Someone should tell these overpaid idiots that when you cut corners you end up with more corners.

      --
      My ducks are not in a row. I don't know where some of them are, and I'm pretty sure one of them is a turkey.
    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by JoeMerchant on Thursday February 29, @11:48PM

      by JoeMerchant (3937) on Thursday February 29, @11:48PM (#1346874)

      Back in the 1970s a plane crash basically cost the carrier $10K per person they killed. Adjusting for inflation that's about $50K today... I think "wrongful death" exposure has increased significantly faster than inflation during the same period.

      --
      🌻🌻 [google.com]
    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by khallow on Friday March 01, @05:16AM

      by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Friday March 01, @05:16AM (#1346917) Journal

      Capitalistic greed in general has a blind-spot for public safety.

      Even the non-capitalist organizations have capitalist greed. Such as when the USSR waited a day and a half before telling anyone about Chernobyl.

      What's going on here is bigger than mere greed. It's a typical organization failure mode where the leadership wants something and so everyone pretends that they have that something until worse things happen that can't be delusioned away. Capitalist greed is a common driver for this, but we're putting on some big blinders when we give it special attention. Even greedy capitalist businesses can have other blind spot-inducing behaviors. For example, Google's recent failings with its AI products doesn't come from greed (original source has plenty of links): [natesilver.net]

      But then this month, Google rolled out a series of new AI models that it calls Gemini. It’s increasingly apparent that Gemini is among the more disastrous product rollouts in the history of Silicon Valley and maybe even the recent history of corporate America, at least coming from a company of Google’s prestige. Wall Street is starting to notice, with Google (Alphabet) stock down 4.5 percent on Monday amid analyst warnings about Gemini’s effect on Google’s reputation.

      Gemini grabbed my attention because the overlap between politics, media and AI is a place on the Venn Diagram where think I can add a lot of value. Despite Google’s protestations to the contrary, the reasons for Gemini’s shortcomings are mostly political, not technological. [...]

  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 29, @08:28PM (6 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 29, @08:28PM (#1346845)

    To permit Boeing to do its own inspections is highly corrupt. So the FAA should look in the mirror while making any "critiques" or leveling any accusations about Boeing

    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 01, @03:06AM (4 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 01, @03:06AM (#1346894)

      The corruption isn't in the FAA, it's in one half of congress who keep cutting funding for industry regulators. FAA, USDA, mining safety, etc., etc., etc. No, industry cannot regulate itself.

      • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 01, @03:50AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 01, @03:50AM (#1346897)

        it's in one half of congress who keep cutting funding

        one half is being scapegoated while the other half sits on its thumbs and does nothing to offend their own benefactors. You're right, the corruption is in congress (both halves), and even more so in the people that reelect them for 40 years, hoping for a phony tax cut or other handout.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 01, @03:39PM (2 children)

        by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 01, @03:39PM (#1346975)

        No, industry cannot regulate itself.

        The only people who can regulate anything is the people who put on the magic badge of government office and somehow become incorruptible, altruistic, and incapable of greed, or error.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 02, @03:39AM (1 child)

          by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 02, @03:39AM (#1347046)

          Well, I guess you're right. We should let industries regulate themselves because of the possibility of the existence of some hypothetical corruptible mystery person.

          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 02, @06:46PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 02, @06:46PM (#1347109)

            Well, I guess you're right. We should let industries regulate themselves because of the possibility of the existence of some hypothetical corruptible mystery person.

            I am right.

            Imagine if the FDA didn't exist to protect companies from being sued into oblivion for adding shit to the food that causes cancer?

            I mean...I did IT work at a large industrial plant that manufactured consumer goods. There was one lady there who was responsible for maintaining FDA compliance so they didn't get sued. When the entire place was about to go out of business, she spilled the beans.

            They were specifically allowed by the FDA to use dyes in the product that were known to cause cancer and reproductive defects, and you couldn't sue for it because the FDA said they were "safe".

            It probably helped that they were on the Forbes top 250 list and donated a crap-ton of money to politicians to ensure they could continue to use these extremely cheap additives.

            So yeah. Let industries regulate themselves and be responsible for how they regulate themselves instead of allowing the government mafia to protect them.

    • (Score: 2) by Beryllium Sphere (r) on Saturday March 02, @08:15AM

      by Beryllium Sphere (r) (5062) on Saturday March 02, @08:15AM (#1347054)

      That was a system that worked for generations. As long as management understood that the designated engineering representatives had to be able to do their jobs, they did them honestly.

  • (Score: 3, Disagree) by Rosco P. Coltrane on Thursday February 29, @08:40PM (3 children)

    by Rosco P. Coltrane (4757) on Thursday February 29, @08:40PM (#1346846)

    The FAA blamed Boeing for a deficient safety culture

    When an aero doesn't have a squeaky-clean safety culture, it's the VERY JOB of the fucking FAA to force them to do safety right!

    In other words, the FAA didn't do THEIR job - as we've all known since the MCAS scandal.

    Not only is the FAA definitely not in a position to pull ranks, somebody at the FAA should have been doing time for years by now. And amazingly nobody has been jailed yet.

    • (Score: 5, Informative) by HiThere on Thursday February 29, @09:29PM

      by HiThere (866) Subscriber Badge on Thursday February 29, @09:29PM (#1346853) Journal

      Unh... This report is part of them doing their job. They're a bit tardy (well, more than a bit), but don't criticize them for doing it, only if they don't do it well.

      --
      Javascript is what you use to allow unknown third parties to run software you have no idea about on your computer.
    • (Score: 2) by RamiK on Thursday February 29, @10:40PM (1 child)

      by RamiK (1813) on Thursday February 29, @10:40PM (#1346860)

      To play devil's advocate, other companies under the FAA's purview don't fuck up nearly as bad as Boeing.

      --
      compiling...
      • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 01, @03:35AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 01, @03:35AM (#1346896)

        I guess every company has earned a degree of trust and competence, and micromanagement will only impede productivity.

        Similar as "innocent until proven guilty". Not everyone entering a store is watched like a hawk. New entrants are watched more closely than are regulars which have a record of doing good business. Once someone violates that trust, their reputation is shot, and their presence warrants immense oversight.

        When it comes to corporate interest, their reputation makes up the lion's share of the value of that corporation. Are they competent? Can you trust them?

        A problem with Management is the collision of interests between the lower level workforce ( machinists, assemblers, technicians, engineers, etc. ) and those tasked to sharpen the pencil, trim the fat, accelerate time to market ( the Executive MBA, and his management team , who represent Wall Street ).

        The lower level workforce usually lives in an economically lean environment where teamwork is respected as beneficial to all, and everyone is aware of the fallacies of building bad product. Sometimes we are forced to confront management and demonstrate "bad attitude" when we see we are being maneuvered to be the scapegoat in some sort of optimization scheme we know is futile. Things like no research, no test, to deliver something we've not made before. "Long Term Planning" considers our grandchildren's grandkids. I have a lot of very usable tools handed to me from grandparents as well as retired co-workers. We also knew that the quality of our work made all the difference of whether we made a useful thing, or whether we just made a disappointment for someone else. We all know what goes around comes around, so we did not like making disappointments for others, as we have already experienced the disappointment of a poor product.

        "If you want it done right, do it yourself" was the common epitaph uttered upon encountering such junk.

        Whereas on the Executive level, executive pay, privileges of rank, perks, expense accounts, paid travel, etc. make financial issues moot. They live in an environment of respect of rank, office politics, and who can be bought off ( aka "team player" ) with special favors.

        Everything has a price and can be bought. Buy favors.
        "Long term planning" is quarterly. Can we make the numbers? Deliver the pizza on time! We promised the Customer it will be there in 20 minutes! You got pulled over for speeding? You caused an accident and took out a family? Too bad. Won't affect me. Read the terms and conditions of our agreement.

        Worker bees? Compartmentalize them! Use Charge Numbers to track who is doing what. If one of the worker bees is hung up, use Charge Numbers to keep other bees from helping the guy out. Or making sure the job is done right. Cut out all that useless chitchat.

        I have the business connections to get funding. I have connections to get tax breaks and permits. I have connections for another executive position when I destroy this organization. I have a Master's degree in how to optimize resources to privatize profit and socialize the loss. The worker bees are expendable. Marketing drives sales. We have executive leadership skills to acquire lower level organizations to leverage their reputation with their customer, often decades old customer relationships, to a new level of profitability! A year later, the absorbed company, all of its reputation, skills, and trust, has been monetized and distributed as executive bonuses and stockholder dividend.

        If you want to be greeted by a team of Corporate Executives, three piece suits, ties, wined and dined in the finest restaurants, rides in Corporate Jets, then we were your place. But if you wanted stuff done, your best bet would be to open up an employment office across the street from us, and get those guys that knew how to build our stuff, as they left our personnel offices with layoff papers in hand.

        We left the Navy with a lot of stuff we had made for them, and left the people who designed and made it were now on the street. Caveat...they were in their 60's and 70's and would much rather work on their stuff than stay home with a wife which had gotten used to the husband being at the lab. We used to make thinly veiled jokes about retiring on the job, being carried out, feet first. I thoroughly expected to go that way too. We were one big family with a shared passion. Making stuff for airplanes and ships was our thing. We made really good stuff. We had a passion for doing things that had never been done before. I was discovering DSP on Delta-Sigma converters as part of doing sonic analysis of hydrophone signals. In those days, everything was built of discrete parts. 5400 TTL, op-amps, comparators, resistors, capacitors, transistors, diodes, and similar low level parts on circuit boards manually laid out with black ribbon tape on clear plastic masks.

        Yes...Bishop Graphics. I still have Lund's book on laying out PCB.

        This was before the internet. We had an enormous database of everything we ever did, and much more, with indexing capabilities beyond AI.

        We called it "Mahogany Row". They were the guys that knew how all our products worked. And they had all sorts of software tools they had made for their stuff and were more than happy to share any of it, source code and all, along with help to adapt it to our specific use. Most written in BASIC, Fortran, and some in C. They taught me how they coded those languages and how to use them. Apparently, they didn't take to management edict too well either. In the end, all of us worker bees had to go.

        We were simply not compatible at all with the newer management paradigms. We derived pleasure and satisfaction from our work. That was not congruent with the compartmentalization and mindless obedience demanded by economic optimization and profit requirements of the Wall Street investors. The new managers did to us exactly what I used to old radios as a kid. I "compartmentalized" them into boxes of parts. After I did this, they were no longer an operating radio. It was a decade before I learned the skills to take a box of parts and reassemble them into an operative radio. That was the skill Mahogany Row had. The new managers only had the skill to take things apart, not make them work.

        A Wall Street Conglomerate bought us, brought in Executive talent. We died. No contracts. Our reputation in tatters. We had Lots of Hat, no cattle.

        These are Multi-National conglomerates. They have no love for any nation. Just profit. They will have us all at each other's throats, and sell us weapons, just as other corporations design diseases ( gain of function viral research ) , have a " lab leak ", then sell us cures ( vaccines ). All operating under the premise that Governments won't prosecute for Crimes against Humanity, continue to be law abiding citizens, and pay tax. Money can buy Government Handshakes to pardon this kind of activity.

        I will post this ac AC so I can truthfully share my experience as an eyewitness to how the MBA will take down a company ( or a Nation! ) for a profit-taking spree, and the kind of companies whose reputations are ripe for acquisition and subsequent monetization, leaving a dry husk of where a productive hive of worker bees used to live.

        There are those who have been known to use their skills to implement very destructive things ... economically ... motivated by pure greed. Those who have that mindset seem to pursue an MBA to gain control of corporate reins.

        Just as those into synthesizing illicit drugs pursue knowledge in organic chemistry synthesis.

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by VLM on Thursday February 29, @08:43PM (3 children)

    by VLM (445) on Thursday February 29, @08:43PM (#1346847)

    The critique of the SMS reads like every example I've ever experienced of too many middle managers without enough to do so they muddy the water to look busy, making it impossible for upper management to see thru the smokescreen and impossible for production floor workers to accomplish anything.

    Its not a problem limited to solely to safety. Let me guess, some other problems are stuff's getting shipped late and over budget, just a wild ass guess.

    • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Thursday February 29, @11:51PM

      by JoeMerchant (3937) on Thursday February 29, @11:51PM (#1346875)

      Remember the "promises of blockchain" ? The real potential of that brief enthusiasm (which seemed to crash just as quickly as BTC stopped inflating) wasn't anything to do with the technology, it was everything to do with transparency - sharing of information across supply chains and partnerships. The promise is real, but it's also a huge threat to "live to obscure the process" middle managers, who apparently got a lid on it before it made them irrelevant.

      --
      🌻🌻 [google.com]
    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by fliptop on Friday March 01, @01:44AM (1 child)

      by fliptop (1666) on Friday March 01, @01:44AM (#1346889) Journal

      making it impossible for upper management to see thru the smokescreen

      That's not entirely true [nypost.com].

      --
      Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.
      • (Score: 2, Insightful) by anubi on Friday March 01, @04:41AM

        by anubi (2828) on Friday March 01, @04:41AM (#1346905) Journal

        Wow!

        I thought only the minions would say such things.

        Then be promptly laid off for pointing it out.

        The minions were the only ones who knew what was happening, like a chef ordered to prepare meals for the customer, with food he knew was spoiled, but did not have the political rank to challenge the order giver.

        I know it takes a different mindset to manage a Michelin 5 star restaurant compared to a generic fast-food joint, but I haven't seen neither of them drop this low. ( I believe Chef Gordon Ramsay has, though ).

        Maybe this is a result of overcompensating executives...their ethics is overwritten by their fear of losing executive privilege. "To sell one's soul".

        Whereas lower paid people will just walk off the job to save face and honor. They have to live with their neighbors and don't have the financial resources to simply throw money at the problem.

        Sounds like Hitler's inner circle. All living in grandeur, yet all living in fear.

        I will opt for peace of soul over the grandeur of living off illicit gain exacted from others who can't fight back. Wasn't it "Tale of Two Cities" that described a rich man trampling a poor man's son with his horse because he was simply in the rich man's way, and what the poor man did about it?

        I can live without that.

        --
        "Prove all things; hold fast that which is good." [KJV: I Thessalonians 5:21]
  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by jman on Friday March 01, @01:18PM

    by jman (6085) Subscriber Badge on Friday March 01, @01:18PM (#1346959) Homepage

    Sounds like the COO needs to clean house ... starting with themself.

  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by bart on Friday March 01, @05:28PM (2 children)

    by bart (2844) on Friday March 01, @05:28PM (#1346986)
    Airbus CEO Guillaume Faury [airbus.com]

    Guillaume began his career in 1992 as a flight-test engineer for the Eurocopter Tiger helicopter in the Direction Générale de l’Armement (DGA), the French government agency responsible for the development and purchase of defence systems for the French armed forces.

    Annual income approx. ¼ million euros.

    Boeing CEO David Calhoun [boeing.com]

    Calhoun has a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Virginia Tech.

    Annual income ca 20 million dollar.

    Just this comparison alone shows where the deep problems are.

    • (Score: 2) by Beryllium Sphere (r) on Saturday March 02, @08:22AM (1 child)

      by Beryllium Sphere (r) (5062) on Saturday March 02, @08:22AM (#1347055)

      Decades ago, Boeing's CEO had an engineering degree.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 02, @09:27PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 02, @09:27PM (#1347133)

        Let me guess, now he has a degree in Women's Studies? Bah, wokeness is the problems with everything...

(1)