Boeing said on Wednesday it would give $100 million to communities and families affected by two crashes on its 737 MAX planes that claimed 346 lives.

The company described the sum as an “initial investment” over multiple years, saying it would work with local governments and non-profit organizations to provide “hardship and living expenses.”

The payments will also boost economic development in regions affected by crashes of planes operated by Ethiopian Airlines and Lion Air, AFP reports.

The $100 million figure is less than the list price for several leading 737 MAX planes. Boeing referenced “multiple lawsuits” in an April securities filing, saying it was also cooperating with various regulatory probes.


Late on Wednesday we reported that Boeing’s woes had escalated dramatically, when the FAA announced that tests on grounded Boeing 737 MAX planes revealed a new, and unrelated safety risk in the computer system for the Boeing 737 Max that could push the plane in an uncontrolled nosedive the FAA announced; the discovery could lead to further lengthy delays before the aircraft is allowed return to service.

Over 400 pilots have joined a class-action lawsuit against Boeing, accusing the company of an “unprecedented cover-up” of “known design flaws” on the company’s top-selling 737 MAX, according to the Australian Broadcasting Company.  The MAX, first put into service in 2017, was involved in two fatal crashes over the course of a year; the first off the coast of Indonesia in October 2018, killing 189 – and the second in Ethiopia, killing 157.

Boeing has acknowledged it had to correct flaws in its 737 MAX flight simulator software used to train pilots, after two deadly crashes involving the aircraft that killed 346 people within six months. The US-based aerospace company said its simulators were incapable of replicating certain flight conditions that contributed to the Ethiopian Airlines crash in March, or the Lion Air accident off Indonesia last October. “Boeing has made corrections to the 737 MAX simulator software and has provided additional information to device operators to ensure that the simulator experience is representative across different flight conditions,” Boeing said in a statement on Saturday.

In a clarification that only created more confusion, Boeing said Monday that an alert intended to notify pilots when the plane might be receiving erroneous data from one of the 737 MAX 8’s ‘angle of attack’ sensors wasn’t disabled intentionally, as WSJ reported on Sunday, but that the feature had been disabled because of a previously undisclosed software glitch.

A Boeing 737 MAX 8 owned by Ethiopian Airlines seemingly dropped out of the sky on Sunday not far from the Addis Abba airport where it took off on a flight to Nairobi, Kenya, killing nearly 160 passengers and crew (there were no survivors) and raising serious questions about the jet model’s safety.

In what is believed to be the worst plane crash in three years, a Boeing 737 Max jet operated by Indonesia’s troubled Lion Air carrier plunged into the Java Sea with 189 people on board just minutes after takeoff on Monday. The domestic flight was flying from the city of Jakarta and flying to the mining town of Pangkal Pinang off the island of Sumatra when air traffic controllers lost contact shortly after 6:30 am local time, when the plane was flying at a relatively low altitude of 2,500 meters. Indonesian search and rescue found debris, possessions belonging to the 189 passengers and crew as well as body parts strewn about the crash site, but that all those aboard are “likely” dead.