Reputation Fail of the Week: Boeing or Southwest Airlines?

Reputation Fail of the Week: Boeing or Southwest Airlines?

Who is going to take more heat for the recent mid-flight fuselage tear –Boeing or Southwest?  The maker of the 737 jet recently said that they did not expect to see the stress fractures that caused this incident until “much, much later,” claiming to be surprised that their safety projections were so inaccurate.

Southwest is currently under scrutiny for how rigorously they test the limits of their planes due to a very high number of takeoff-landing cycles.

The plane in question had over thirty thousand flight cycles.  Boeing hadn’t planned on the planes needing inspection for such issues until after approximately sixty thousand.  Both numbers seem fairly high for a wait to inspect a giant metal tube that transports people through the air at high speeds, no?  The FAA has since grounded hundreds of planes for inspection, most of which belong to Southwest Airlines.


Some claim that Boeing is to blame for this oversight, others are pointing to faulty inspection practices by Southwest Airlines.  What do you think, whose reputation will be most affected by this incident?  Faulty manufacturing or lax inspection practices?


2 Comments for “Reputation Fail of the Week: Boeing or Southwest Airlines?”
  1. They are both accountable to THEIR customers.

    Boeing needs to be accountable to Southwest and Southwest needs to be accountable to its passengers.

    If Boeing doesn’t appease Southwest, it will switch plane providers. If Southwest doesn’t appears its passengers, they’ll switch to another airline.

    Just my 2 cents. 😉

  2. I couldn’t agree more 🙂
    That being said, who’s reputation is going to take the bigger hit? I have a feeling that Southwest is going to suffer for this one more in the short-term.

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