Regarding the Seattle Times story in the May 6 Herald (“Boeing pressure FAA-authorized engineers on safety issues”), excellent reporting related to the Boeing-FAA oversight of implementation of the Organizational Designation Authorization (ODA).
There most certainly needs to be a review of the ODA system, which also includes the quality control designees (inspection union members). The quality designees are responsible for ensuring components and aircraft are built to engineering type design. Their signature on the various airworthiness certificates allow the product to be delivered to the customers.
As a retired employee of 50-plus years — 40 as a FAA designee — I certainly feel qualified to discuss the designee system, as it once was and the deteriorated state it presently is in.
The majority of engineering issues in the article is what is also happening to the quality designees. This should not be allowed to continue. Profit cannot be allowed to override public safety and quality.
Boeing commercial airplane leadership is failing to maintain the legacies of Will Boeing, Bill Allen and T.A. Wilson by putting profit before aircraft safety.
Dick B. Bender