The FAA is proposing a $2.75 million civil penalty against Boeing for allegedly failing to maintain its commercial airplane quality control system in accordance with approved FAA procedures. In September 2008, Boeing discovered it had been installing nonconforming fasteners on 777s. The following month, the FAA sent Boeing a letter of investigation that requested a response within 20 working days.
The FAA alleges that despite repeatedly submitting action plans that set deadlines for the accomplishment of certain corrective actions, Boeing subsequently failed to implement those plans. The OEM implemented a plan to address the fastener issue on Nov. 10, 2010, more than two years after it first learned of the problem.
“Manufacturers must make it a priority to identify and correct quality problems in a timely manner,” said FAA Administrator Michael Huerta. Boeing stopped using the nonconforming fasteners after officials discovered the problem. However, some of the underlying manufacturing issues continued to exist until after the corrective action plan was in place.
Boeing has 30 days from the receipt of the FAA’s civil penalty letter to respond to the agency.