Boeing Appreciates its Suppliers, and They should Consider Support in the Airworthiness World

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Randy Tinseth writes one of the most interesting and informative blogs in aviation. He posted the above story yesterday in a most timely fashion. On the tails of the ion lithium battery problems, the vice president, marketing for Boeing Commercial Airplanes hosted the Pacific Northwest Aerospace Alliance Conference. The presentation focused on future products, such as the 777X and the 787-10X, but the company’s message was one of support to the suppliers. Randy’s key quote was:

“Across the board, we’re offering the best products to meet our customers’ needs. And we thank our suppliers for being part of the Boeing team.”

Any supplier, who has followed the tortuous trail of the Emergency Airworthiness Directive proceeding, has to be aware of, if not terrified by, the prospect of being drawn into such a public conflagration. Then add that the NTSB has initiated an investigation of the accident (?) or incident (?). The names and involvement of suppliers have been announced by the NTSB and flashed on the screens of the electronic media as well as highlighted in the print journals.

A supplier may not be listed in the Type Certificate and/or Production Certificate issued by the FAA. However, their tests, analyses, representations and calculations are fully a part of the record developed by the FAA in the support of the certification. It may be a good idea for the supplier, who may not be familiar with the FAA certification procedures and NTSB proceedings, to include our professionals from the early stages of getting FAA approval and beyond.

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