After the 2018 Lion Air crash the FAA conducted an internal review. Their findings projected 15 more fatal crashes over the life of the MAX fleet unless fixes were made. And yet, they were still allowed to fly and a second plane crashed not long later.
Assuming Boeing never fixed MCAS, that would be a catastrophic crash every 2-3 years, with a staggering total death toll. And considering this report was released before the Ethiopian crash, the actual number could be higher.
In a statement, Boeing said the analysis determined that an emergency notice with instructions for pilots “sufficed to allow continued operation of the MAX fleet until changes to the MCAS software could be implemented.”
Meanwhile, it’s projected the MAX planes won’t be flying again until into 2020. Of course, all this isn’t helping confidence in the FAA. It continues to baffle me all this has happened in the first place. Reminds me of the cargo door catastrophes from early widebodies..