Boeing is not casting any official light on the concerns that have been raised over the insecure access to an electronics and electrical systems bay located below and behind the floorline of the cockpit of its 777s, including the 777-200ER that was missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.

This is Boeing’s response to a request made last Friday 7 November (on the US side of the dateline) for a commentary on matters raised in this post on Plane Talking and on the Jeff Wise website.

Further to your inquiry about access to the electronics bay on 777s, we’re not in a position to offer any comment at the moment. This is consistent with accident investigation protocols where parties to the investigation agree not to comment ahead of a finding.

This is an inadequate response. One of the protocols of air accident investigations that conform to the prescriptions and intent of ICAO Annex 13  (covering air safety inquiries) is that if a safety issue is identified in the course of an investigation then it is dealt with expeditiously rather than kept on ice pending the publication of a final report.

At any given minute there would be hundreds of Boeing 777’s in the air or making their way to or from a terminal gate.

Boeing as the maker of the vanished Malaysia Airlines 777-200ER is a party to the Malaysia led investigation. It knows what is going on.

If it has been established that the mysterious diversion of MH370 and its eventual disappearance from military radar on 8 March had nothing to do with the e/e bay it could say so, with the approval of the investigation of course.

If the role of the e/e bay and its insecure access in the disappearance of MH370 is undetermined, the questions of the insecure access to this important part of the airliner remain valid, and, it could be reasonably concluded, made the subject of precautionary or mandatory actions or remedies as the case may be.

The 777 is the most flown and most successful twin engined wide body airliner, and while its robustness and safety has never been in doubt,  its security in operation is obviously relevant to a very large number of passengers and many airlines.

It would be very useful for all parties if Boeing could refocus its attentions on these questions and provide commentary, answers, and if necessary, remedies.

MH370 was carrying 239 people when it took off from Kuala Lumpur for Beijing eight months ago. A detailed sea bed search for the wreckage is underway in the south Indian Ocean, SW of Perth, under Australian management, in accordance with its location within Australia’s aerial and maritime international search, rescue and recovery zones.

All posts tagged MH370 can be found using the red button on the right hand side of Plane Talking’s landing page.

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