Is 1 Hour of iPad Training on the 737 Max All That's Needed?

-edited

Boeing is pressing hard to get the 737 Max back in the air ASAP, hoping to avoid simulators. Will the public go along?

If Boeing wants to rebuild trust in 737 MAX, Pilots Say They Need More Training. But what constitutes adequate training?

American Airlines pilots have warned that Boeing Co’s draft training proposals for the troubled 737 MAX do not go far enough to address their concerns, according to written comments submitted to the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration and seen by Reuters.

A draft report by an FAA-appointed board of pilots, engineers and other experts concluded that pilots only need additional computer-based training to understand MCAS, rather than simulator time. The public has until April 30 to make comments.

APA is arguing that mere computer explanation “will not provide a level of confidence for pilots to feel not only comfortable flying the aircraft but also relaying that confidence to the traveling public.”

It said the MAX computer training, which originally involved a one-hour iPad course, should include videos of simulator sessions showing how MCAS works along with demonstrations of other cockpit emergencies such as runaway stabilizer, a loss of control that occurred on both doomed flights.

APA also called for recurring training on simulators that includes scenarios like those experienced by the Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines pilots, in addition to computer training.

Required simulator training could delay the MAX’s return to service because it takes time to schedule hundreds or thousands of pilots on simulators. Hourly rates for simulators range between $500 and $1000, excluding travel expenses.

American and Southwest Itching to Go

  • American Airlines Chief Executive Doug Parker said on Friday that even if other countries delay the ungrounding of the MAX, once the FAA approves it, American will start flying its 24 aircraft.
  • Union pilots for Southwest Airlines Co, the world’s largest operator of the MAX with 34 jets and dozens more on order, have said they were satisfied with the FAA draft report but would decide on additional training once they see Boeing’s final proposals.

I am not qualified to suggest what constitutes adequate training.

However, Boeing certainly made a lot of bad decisions to this point. The pilots and experts agree to that.

The question is whether the public goes out of their way to avoid these planes? I don't know, but I suspect not.

There just better not be another incident or faith will vanish.

How Concerned Are You?

Mike "Mish" Shedlock

Comments (26)
No. 1-16
Six000mileyear
Six000mileyear

I have a minor in education. A simple video presentation is an insufficient training platform to internalize the information to the point a pilot can react automatically to an emergency situation. A video coupled with simulator exercises would be the most cost effective training. Without the pilot exhibiting the correct response to an emergency situation, the instructor will not know if the pilot has been correctly trained.

The proposal to use only a training video shows Boeing is still more concerned with profit than repairing its brand by making the extra effort to ensure safe flying.

mharris240
mharris240

Concerned, very concerned. I'm avoiding the Max and Southwest if in fact they continue to fly the MAX and these "adequate" draft training proposals become the norm. In fact, we're heading on a trip flying Southwest next week and I'll be telling them at the counter, and most likely through email to their CEO if these draft proposals are accepted as-is.

Carlos_
Carlos_

"I don't know, but I suspect not." And you are %100 correct. Most people don't check what kind of plane they will be boarding. I fly a lot so I do. No I'll never fly the max even if it is re-branded as Caligula suggested. BTW re-branding is use to hide problems that the original brand had. IMO the MAX is a turd with wins.

Bam_Man
Bam_Man

"They don't give a f**k about you. They don't care. At all" -- George Carlin
Far truer now than when he made that statement year ago.

Carl_R
Carl_R

If Boeing is actually concerned about it's profit, it absolutely wants to avoid another accident, especially an accident in the US. If there is another accident, it will be very, very expensive.

wootendw
wootendw

"American Airlines Chief Executive Doug Parker said....American will start flying its 24 aircraft." "...Southwest Airlines....said they were satisfied with the FAA draft report..."

"The question is whether the public goes out of their way to avoid these planes?"

I am not the public and I don't fly much but, when I do, I shall avoid flying the Max and with the companies that continue to fly them. In fact, I'll avoid flying any new Boeing planes for a few years and I'll consider FAA 'approvals' to be irrelevant.

tz1
tz1

Let me pull out of the power dive, HAL.

I can't do that Dave.

iPad my credentials.

Regulation kills. If you pretend this is a 1967 737, you can do a 1 hour iPad slide show, but if you actually design the plane perfectly and correctly, you will spend a billion in meeting regulatory certifications, require all your customers to spend billions in retraining (maybe including sexual harassment is a no-no), etc.

Imagine if you had to spend a week and $1000 for certified learning "new" automobile dashboards and screens. You would buy the old model, a model without the screens, or an old used car that didn't have that.

thimk
thimk

use them to haul freight until they get enough service hours.

Sechel
Sechel

i don't buy it. the plane had a single sensor. zero redundancy for a critical feature designed to compensate for a design limitation on a plane that wasn't designed to be manipulated the way boeing has adapted it. if the plane were properly designed the system wouldn't be needed in the first place.

Bob Braan
Bob Braan

If you want to make sure you don't get on a 737 Max for an upcoming flight book Delta instead. They don't have any 737 Max aircraft.

Greggg
Greggg

Divers learn early on that belly-flops hurt. Pilots can't just dust themselves off and try a second time.

mharris240
mharris240

Latest MAX statement from Southwest, as of 4/26/19:

"...Southwest owns 34 Boeing MAX aircraft, which will remain out of service until the FAA rescinds this order, and we feel confident that all of the necessary actions have been taken to operate the aircraft safely and reliably..."

Je'Ri
Je'Ri

My 40 years of flying experience suggests this is little more than putting lipstick on a diseased pig. The concept of the MAX as an extension of the 737-line is flawed; it is a significant alteration of the original certified design, and it should have been put through new certification, which begs another question, that if the engineers had started from scratch, they might not have needed this sort of software-fix to make it controllable. Boeing criminally skirted the certification process, and the airlines were criminally complicit because differences training is much cheaper than new type-ratings

joezilair.com
joezilair.com

I would have no qualms flying on one right now...as long as the pilots knew what they were supposed to do. Technology will always evolve, but as the human interface and the last line of defense to undesirable outcomes we as pilots should always be at the forefront of the defensive line, ready to put aside the technical issue and go back to basics...like disconnecting the stab trim switches and trimming manually.... And knowing the system well enough to have confidence in what we do...no need to consult the books for an action plan....see the preliminary report!?!

APRnow
APRnow

Joezilair comes closest to the 'answer' to all this. Its complicated...and its not. Doesn't anyone on these threads recall the critical study produced by the world airlines (some thirty yrs ago, I believe)? where the putative result was: its the pilot's religion??? and the immediate change in pilot training???