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美监管部门发现波音737 Max生产过程存在大量问题

F.A.A. Audit of Boeing’s 737 Max Production Found Dozens of Issues

[2024年3月24日] 来源:New York Times  整理:Geilien.cn   字号 [] [] []  
联邦航空局在波音公司部署了多达20名审计员,波音公司在华盛顿州伦顿的工厂生产737 Max。
联邦航空局在波音公司部署了多达20名审计员,波音公司在华盛顿州伦顿的工厂生产737 Max。 Jason Redmond/Reuters

A six-week audit by the Federal Aviation Administration of Boeing’s production of the 737 Max jet found dozens of problems throughout the manufacturing process at the plane maker and one of its key suppliers, according to a slide presentation reviewed by The New York Times.
根据《纽约时报》看过的一份幻灯片演示文稿显示,美国联邦航空局对波音737 Max的生产进行了为期六周的审计,发现这家飞机制造商及一家主要供应商在整个制造过程中存在数十个问题。

The air-safety regulator initiated the examination after a door panel blew off a 737 Max 9 during an Alaska Airlines flight in early January. Last week, the agency announced that the audit had found “multiple instances” in which Boeing and the supplier, Spirit AeroSystems, failed to comply with quality-control requirements, though it did not provide specifics about the findings.
今年1月初,阿拉斯加航空公司一架737 Max 9飞机的舱门脱落,航空安全监管机构随后启动了这项调查。上周,该机构宣布,审计发现“多起”波音及供应商势必锐航空系统公司未能遵守质量控制的要求,但没有提供调查结果的具体细节。

The presentation reviewed by The Times, though highly technical, offers a more detailed picture of what the audit turned up. Since the Alaska Airlines episode, Boeing has come under intense scrutiny over its quality-control practices, and the findings add to the body of evidence about manufacturing lapses at the company.

For the portion of the examination focused on Boeing, the F.A.A. conducted 89 product audits, a type of review that looks at aspects of the production process. The plane maker passed 56 of the audits and failed 33 of them, with a total of 97 instances of alleged noncompliance, according to the presentation.

The F.A.A. also conducted 13 product audits for the part of the inquiry that focused on Spirit AeroSystems, which makes the fuselage, or body, of the 737 Max. Six of those audits resulted in passing grades, and seven resulted in failing ones, the presentation said.
在调查中,联邦航空局还对势必锐航空系统公司进行了13项产品审计,该公司生产737 Max的机身。报告称,其中六项审计结果为合格,七项不合格。

At one point during the examination, the air-safety agency observed mechanics at Spirit using a hotel key card to check a door seal, according to a document that describes some of the findings. That action was “not identified/documented/called-out in the production order,” the document said.

In another instance, the F.A.A. saw Spirit mechanics apply liquid Dawn soap to a door seal “as lubricant in the fit-up process,” according to the document. The door seal was then cleaned with a wet cheesecloth, the document said, noting that instructions were “vague and unclear on what specifications/actions are to be followed or recorded by the mechanic.”

Asked about the appropriateness of using a hotel key card or Dawn soap in those situations, a spokesman for Spirit, Joe Buccino, said the company was “reviewing all identified nonconformities for corrective action.”

Boeing did not immediately comment on the results of the audit. In late February, the F.A.A. gave the company 90 days to develop a plan for quality-control improvements. In response, its chief executive, Dave Calhoun, said that “we have a clear picture of what needs to be done,” citing in part the audit findings.

Boeing said this month that it was in talks to acquire Spirit, which it spun out in 2005. Mr. Buccino said on Monday that Spirit had received preliminary audit findings from the F.A.A. and planned to work with Boeing to address what the regulator had raised. He said Spirit’s goal was to reduce to zero the number of defects and errors in its processes.

“Meanwhile, we continue multiple efforts undertaken to improve our safety and quality programs,” Mr. Buccino said. “These improvements focus on human factors and other steps to minimize nonconformities.”

The F.A.A. said it could not release specifics about the audit because of its ongoing investigation into Boeing in response to the Alaska Airlines episode. In addition to that inquiry, the National Transportation Safety Board is investigating what caused the door panel to blow off the plane, and the Justice Department has begun a criminal investigation.

During the F.A.A.’s examination, the agency deployed as many as 20 auditors at Boeing and roughly half a dozen at Spirit, according to the slide presentation. Boeing assembles the 737 Max at its plant in Renton, Wash., while Spirit builds the plane’s fuselage at its factory in Wichita, Kan.
幻灯片演示文稿显示,在联邦航空局调查期间,该机构在波音公司部署了多达20名审计员,在势必锐公司部署了大约六名审计员。波音公司在华盛顿州伦顿的工厂组装737 Max。势必锐公司则在其位于堪萨斯州威奇托的工厂制造飞机的机身。

The audit at Boeing was wide ranging, covering many parts of the 737 Max, including its wings and an assortment of other systems.
对波音公司的审计范围很广,涵盖了737 Max的许多部件,包括机翼和各种其他系统。

Many of the problems found by auditors fell in the category of not following an “approved manufacturing process, procedure or instruction,” according to the presentation. Some other issues dealt with quality-control documentation.

One audit dealt with the component that blew off the Alaska Airlines jet, known as a door plug. Boeing failed that check, according to the presentation. Some of the issues flagged by that audit related to inspection and quality-control documentation, though the exact findings were not detailed in the presentation.

The F.A.A.’s examination also explored how well Boeing’s employees understood the company’s quality-control processes. The agency interviewed six company engineers and scored their responses, and the overall average score came out to only 58 percent.

One audit at Spirit that focused on the door plug component found five problems. One of those problems, the presentation said, was that Boeing “failed to provide evidence of approval of minor design change under a method acceptable to the F.A.A.” It was not clear from the presentation what the design change was.

Another audit dealt with the installation of the door plug, and it was among those that Spirit failed. The audit raised concerns about the Spirit technicians who carried out the work and found that the company “failed to determine the knowledge necessary for the operation of its processes.”

Other audits that Spirit failed included one that involved a cargo door and another that dealt with the installation of cockpit windows.

Mark Walker是驻华盛顿的一名调查记者,主要关注交通领域。