Report: Missing Bolts Caused Alaska Airlines' Mid-Air Door Blowout
Four bolts that help secure the door plug of a Boeing 737 Max 9 were missing when an Alaska Airlines flight blew out mid-air last month, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said on Tuesday....
Four bolts that help secure the door plug of a Boeing 737 Max 9 were missing when an Alaska Airlines flight blew out mid-air last month, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said on Tuesday.1
In its 19-page preliminary report, the NTSB said the faulty door plug was opened to repair damaged rivets on the plane's fuselage at Boeing's factory in September 2023.2
According to the NTSB, Boeing's record shows the door plug and its associated bolts had been removed in order to replace the damaged rivets.3
However, when it was re-installed, a photo taken by Boeing staff revealed that three of the four bolts on the door plug were missing. The fourth bolt couldn't be seen in the photo as it had been covered by insulation.4
The NTSB determined that nothing could prevent Alaska Airlines' door plug from moving upward and 'off the stop pads' mid-flight without the bolts.5
Following the report's findings, Boeing CEO Dave Calhoun took responsibility for the incident and promised to 'do better,' adding, 'An event like this must not happen on an airplane that leaves our factory.'6
Pro-establishment narrative, as provided by Boeing. Boeing has taken full responsibility for the mid-air emergency and continues to work closely with the NTSB and the Federal Aviation Authority to implement measures to improve safety and quality. Several new checks and quality control inspections have already been implemented to ensure this type of fault doesn't occur again.
Establishment-critical narrative, as provided by Guardian. It's completely unthinkable that these planes can still fly, given the types of issues being reported. As an analogy, if you had a car that had a piece fly off while driving, prompting you to take it to a mechanic, and the mechanic says, 'Here you go. The car is fixed. We found other problems, but you can still take it out on the road,' you would be scratching your head.