Boeing Cockpit Recorder Data Loss (By Design) Under Scrutiny

A two hour log overwrite standard in 2024 is shameful for modern planes.

National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) chair Jennifer Homendy said on Sunday no data was available on the cockpit voice recorder because it was not retrieved within two hours – when recording restarts, erasing previous data.

The U.S. requires cockpit voice recorders to log two hours of data versus 25 hours in Europe for planes made after 2021.

Pilots in the U.S. might be better off with a pad of paper and pencil.

“American Airlines pilot Dennis Tajer uses a sticky note to remind himself to turn off the engine anti-ice system on Boeing 737 Max jets.” Source: NPR

This will come up more and more as Boeing is exposed for allegedly having a culture of destroying evidence.

Notably the requirement for Boeing is that it maintain at least two hours, which means it could design for the more logical 25 hours instead. A bare minimum doesn’t seem appropriate when we’re talking about a world of long-haul flights reaching upwards of 18 hours. Obviously a day of data is the right move for product engineers who care about passenger survival, as proven in just the latest two Boeing safety incidents.

New Zealand’s Transport Accident Investigation Commission said on Tuesday it was seizing the cockpit voice recorder and flight data recorder of a LATAM Airlines 787 after an incident that left more than 50 people injured.

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