The aircraft manufacturer Boeing has been in the public eye for years due to the questionable quality of its aircraft. Now a quality manager who worked with Boeing for years is fueling the criticism.

For years, the large corporation has repeatedly been linked to tragic crashes and other dramatic safety problems. Recently, a Boeing plane lost part of the wall in the air and during the flight. And it is precisely this model that scares even the engineers involved.

Santiago Parades was a quality manager for Spirit AeroSystems, one of Boeing’s largest suppliers, for twelve years. In a recent interview with CBSNews, he explained that he discovered so many flaws in his work that he “almost became afraid to fly.” His statement coincides with several other reports of quality defects on board the 737 Max, the manufacturer’s most problematic aircraft.

Spirit AeroSystems is responsible for building or supplying most of the machine’s components. Parades, who left the supplier in mid-2022 due to poor quality, said it was “very rare” for his team to look at a 737 Max order and find no defects. It was a “recipe for disaster” and “only a matter of time before something bad happens.”

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This is understandable if you consider the most famous recent incident involving an Alaska Airlines Boeing 737 aircraft. In January 2024, a part of the cabin wall popped out shortly after takeoff and the plane had to make an emergency landing.

According to the US traffic safety authority NTSBZ (via, the necessary parts for fastening, four door bolts, could not be found. While no one was seriously injured, the incident refocused public attention on the 737 Max’s design flaws after about three years of relative silence.

“Why is that happend? Because Spirit overlooked a defect because they pressured the inspectors,” Paredes told CBSNews about the incident. “If quality mattered, [he] would still be with Spirit.” But the opposite was the case, which also led to his near-fear of flying. “There are about two or three planes that you know you never want to fly on. Knowing what I know about the 737, I feel very uncomfortable flying in one of them.”

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Boeing has experienced several significant safety issues with its 737 Max aircraft model in recent years. These have led to extensive investigations, a global flight pause and intense discussions about safety practices in the airline industry.

These include two fatal crashes – Lion Air Flight 610 in October 2018 and Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 in March 2019 – that killed a total of 346 people and led to global investigations. These revealed that an automatic stabilization system called MCAS (Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System) reacted incorrectly, which contributed to the crash of both aircraft.

In addition to the 737 Max model, other Boeing aircraft have also experienced technical problems, such as production defects and quality control problems with the Boeing 787 Dreamliner.

Boeing’s 737 is used in the USA, where the aircraft is part of the fleet of Alaska, United, Southwest and American Airlines, among others, for some of the commercial flights, as well as in Europe and Germany. According to Reisetopia, several airlines use the machine there.

European airlines using Boeing (as of March 11, 2024):

Sources: CBSNews,, Reisetopia

This article was created using machine-assisted (AI) technology and was carefully reviewed by the editorial team before publication.

By Dana Neumann

The original for this article “This plane scares engineers: “Recipe for a catastrophe”” comes from