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Perspective -- Bob McArthur

Earlier this year Boeing was pleased to conduct an all-operator symposium in Seattle. Attendance totaled more than 500 people, representing 170 airlines and other operators. I hope your flight operations personnel were among those able to attend. This was our first joint flight operations symposium, involving Boeing people from both our Long Beach and Seattle locations. We plan to make all such future gatherings a joint event, providing you with an ongoing means to communicate, face-to-face, with the people who support the merged product line.

Your feedback indicated that the meeting was a great success. For example, you liked how technical, operations, standards, and training personnel from airlines and Boeing presented information about our airplanes and conducted a formal dialogue on each current-production model. According to the comments we heard, you found these exchanges to be a valuable opportunity to meet with peers and discuss items of mutual interest.

Because we continuously work to improve our support to you, whether it is related to current issues or those you anticipate facing in the future, we asked you how we might make our symposiums more valuable. You asked us to include more specific technical information on each model. As a result, our targets for the next joint symposium will include presentations on technical issues and working groups to address specific model issues.

In the meantime, though, Boeing Flight Technical Services (FTS) will continue to support you with operations manuals and checklists, Airplane Flight Manuals, performance data and software, Minimum Equipment List/Dispatch Deviation Guide information, and simulator data. Boeing is also developing new products and services for expanded future support. A few examples are

  • FTS Online, which provides you with 24-hour access to operational information, software, and documents (request an account by sending e-mail to flightops.engineering@boeing.com).

  • The Procedural Event Analysis Tool (PEAT), which Boeing is introducing at airlines to help them investigate incidents and develop measures to prevent similar events in the future (see "The Role of Human Factors in Improving Aviation Safety").

  • Customized publishing, which meets your unique requirements outside of our existing document content and format offerings.

We believe the key to our success is listening to you and then meeting your requirements. Our support engineers are frequently on the road to visit you and understand your concerns. We are committed to keeping your airplanes flying safely and efficiently, whether the issue you face is operational, technical, or training related.

In addition to our documents and support, we also coordinate with FlightSafety Boeing Training International to develop and deliver flight and maintenance training courses. As we mentioned in the symposium, we always welcome your feedback on how we are doing in these areas.

You’ve told us that we must also recognize your needs for specialized support in areas such as extended-range twin-engine operations (ETOPS) and dispatch. We are available to assist you 24 hours a day, either through our Technical Support Desk for Douglas-designed airplanes or Rapid Response Center for Boeing-designed airplanes (see the Boeing Field Service page).

Until we see you at a future symposium, please stay in close contact. We look forward to our next opportunity to help you.

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