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Sriwijaya Air crash: Safety problems or another crisis for Boeing?

Jan. 10, 2021 9:03 AM ETThe Boeing Company (BA)By: Yoel Minkoff, SA News Editor85 Comments

  • Indonesian authorities have located the black boxes of the Sriwijaya Air jet that crashed into the sea shortly after taking off from the capital Jakarta, while human body parts and pieces of the plane were also retrieved. There are no clues yet as to what caused the crash, which saw a Boeing (NYSE:BA) 737-500 – with 62 people on board – descend more than 10K feet in less than a minute before falling off the radar.
  • Backdrop: Even before the latest crash, more people had died in air crashes in Indonesia than in any other country over the past decade, according to Aviation Safety Network’s database. The nation has experienced 104 accidents and 2,353 related fatalities due to poor maintenance, pilot training, communications or mechanical failures and air-traffic control problems. In 2007, the EU even banned all Indonesian airlines, though improving standards saw the carriers removed from the blacklist by June 2018.
  • Could this be related to problems with the 737 MAX? A Lion Air Boeing 737 MAX also plunged into the Java Sea soon after takeoff from Soekarno-Hatta International Airport in 2018, which was shortly followed by a MAX crash in Ethiopia in 2019. The two crashes killed 346 people and triggered a crisis that cost Boeing some $20B and tarnished its reputation. However, the Sriwijaya Air plane was a nearly 27-year-old Boeing 737-500, which does not have the MCAS stall-prevention system implicated in the MAX safety crisis.
  • What are they saying? Sriwijaya Airlines CEO Jefferson Irwin Jauwena announced the plane was in good condition before it took off, though the flight was delayed for 30 minutes due to heavy rain. Investigators are meanwhile looking into factors including mechanical failure, pilot actions, maintenance records, weather conditions and whether there was any unlawful interference with the jetliner.
  • Last week, Boeing was fined $2.5B as part of an agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice to resolve criminal charges related to a fraud conspiracy with the two fatal crashes of the 737 MAX jet.

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Comments (85)

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JDoe20Today, 1:40 PMComments (8.84K)This 737-500 was 26 years old and had flown millions and millions of miles safely. This crash has little chance of being a Boeing issue.For those who disagree, please read bullets 1 & 2.ReplyLike(3)

vicxToday, 1:19 PMMarketplaceComments (7.20K)“There are no clues yet as to what caused the crash…” but let’s speculate on SA, right?ReplyLike(3)

NWdividendToday, 2:08 PMComments (869)@vicxExactly. Airplane accidents elicit the most ignorant comments on this site.ReplyLike

taplingerToday, 2:22 PMComments (1.03K)@NWdividend Definitely connected to Trump’s attempted coup. The internet says this was to be Trump’s getaway plane in case the coup failed but at the last minute Trump couldn’t find his ticket.ReplyLike

jalexs91Today, 12:41 PMComments (15)30 years OLD plane………..? + Indonesian Airlines regulators are weak since always. Truely sorry for those families, but will like to listen for blackbox news.ReplyLike

lobeskcToday, 2:05 PMComments (61)@jalexs91i hope the Indonesian government releases the tapes with no coverup.ReplyLike

No PicknicToday, 12:40 PMComments (603)No mayday call. That’s not a good sign. Plane was at 10.000 ft when something abrupt happened and pilots weren’t able to make a call. Either they were incapable physically or the radio had no power. Transmitter was working. Had to be a catastrophic event. No pilot error.ReplyLike(1)

spidersensetinglingToday, 1:50 PMComments (260)@No Picknic What is the range of Iranian missiles? Seriously condolences to the families of the victims but this isn’t a Boeing issue but a maintenance of 26 year old plane issue or perhaps even a terrorist bomb since it was a catastrophic event with no radio call etc.ReplyLike

No PicknicToday, 2:18 PMComments (603)@spidersensetinglinglooking at the speed it wasn’t abnormal in its ascendance. Then suddenly the plane turns to port side. Looks like damage to the controls or the (left)wing or both. This leaves many scenarios open.ReplyLike

WilbodaveToday, 2:20 PMComments (1.98K)You have made assumptions with no basis in fact. You wrote “and pilots weren’t able to make a call.” There’s a rule in aviation that pilots fly the plane first in an emergency. Maybe they were running checklists, trying to troubleshoot the problem. For the pilots, a radio call does absolutely nothing when they’re struggling to regain control of the aircraft.ReplyLikeSee More Replies

Ace-VenturaToday, 12:33 PMComments (325)Enough is enough. BA has to be held accountable and pay an insane amount to each victim’s family.ReplyLike(1)

LMinAppletonToday, 12:53 PMComments (351)@Ace-VenturaIn other words, don’t confuse me with the facts, I have my mind made up.ReplyLike(8)

Ace-VenturaToday, 12:54 PMComments (325)@LMinAppleton look at the number of people they killed in the past 5 years. That’s all the facts you need.ReplyLike

LMinAppletonToday, 1:02 PMComments (351)@Ace-VenturaLet’s just say, I wouldn’t want you as a juror if I were a defendant in a trial.ReplyLike(2)See More Replies

jteamazToday, 12:32 PMComments (331)This is easily the most ridiculously stupid thing I’ve seen posted here. I had to stop and read the caption more than once, and then got into the article with the same thing. Another crisis for Boeing ?? On a 26 yr. old aircraft ?? Is this related to the MAX ?? Are you seriously kidding me with this BS ?? I’m going to give you the benefit of the doubt and think maybe it’s snark or sarcasm … good God.ReplyLike(10)

JDoe20Today, 1:36 PMComments (8.84K)@jteamaz I was drawn to the 3rd bullet starting:“Could this be related to problems with the 737 MAX?”Instead of answering the question and THEN giving their slanted view on the Max, they bury actual answer until the very end, after the non answer portion.ReplyLike(2)

swilson3828Today, 12:28 PMComments (12)Doesnt matter if it’s a MAXX or not. It has the Boeing name on the side and that will be enough for about a 40% haircut Monday when all of the stop losses are taken outReplyLike(1)

Cailean investing from across the pondToday, 12:24 PMComments (46)wow, really SA?ReplyLike(1)

RetiredMan1959Today, 12:20 PMComments (1.10K)The -500 was designed in the late 1970s and produced until 2000.Highly doubtful that it was a design or a production issue.ReplyLike(3)

humantorchToday, 12:15 PMComments (760)Fell 10,000 feet in a minute? Sounds like it experienced a catastrophic event and went straight down. Those poor people.ReplyLike

Bikerron1Today, 12:42 PMPremiumComments (1.08K)@humantorchHaving flown for 33 years with an airline, most as an Capt. I agree with you. If the debris field is more then 1 or more miles you put a bomb in the equation.ReplyLike(1)

eveiziToday, 12:11 PMComments (92)Clickbait headline.ReplyLike(3)

RosededToday, 11:53 AMComments (614)*Asks the question: “could this be related to the MAX crisis?”- five lines later -Plane’s been flying for almost 3 decades and does not have the MCAS system of the MAX. Also, it’s not a MAX.ReplyLike(8)

johnfairplayToday, 12:17 PMComments (3.14K)@Roseded – So, asked and answered. Good job, SA.ReplyLike

Bruce BohannonToday, 11:52 AMComments (4.25K)Thanks Yoel.ReplyLike

767IDGToday, 11:49 AMComments (1.93K)We should not rule out pilot suicide.Black boxes (CVR/FDR) will confirm this soon enough if the case.Indonesia has an extremely weak regulatory environment that got Indonesian operators banned from European and US airspace for several years up to approx 2016.ReplyLike(2)

Eugene___0Today, 11:29 AMComments (55)Indonesian airlines have been intentionally keeping quality of maintenance lower than globally accepted standard in order to keep air travel affordable to majority of locals. If they improve the quality of maintenance, it will be more expensive to fly, hence most locals won’t be able to afford flying… I heard this from local. Scary stuff…ReplyLike(3)

Money_TalksToday, 11:19 AMComments (387)Where’s Sully when you need him?ReplyLike(1)

BuffteethrBlogToday, 11:05 AMComments (1.72K)What a horrible author? Why even hint at a link with 737Max when the plane in question is 27 years old?ReplyLike(18)

kjones2000Today, 11:24 AMComments (8)@BuffteethrBlog Agree 100%. Sounds like he hold short positions on Boeing.ReplyLike(5)

johnfairplayToday, 12:18 PMComments (3.14K)@BuffteethrBlog – So your idea would be to leave it out of the article and let people speculate?ReplyLike

KJax66Today, 12:24 PMComments (70)@BuffteethrBlogWhy is the author horrible? He stated that the aircraft was “nearly 27-year-old Boeing 737-500, which does not have the MCAS stall-prevention system implicated in the MAX safety crisis.”ReplyLike(1)See More Replies

SuperPacToday, 10:59 AMComments (5.06K)Whatever may have caused this tragedy, there is no end to Boeing’s woes. It only seems to be attracting bad / tragic new cycles.Tread with care, dear retail investor.ReplyLike(3)

Kurt LicherovskyToday, 10:58 AMComments (2.46K)Buying opportunity if BA sells off, taking a small position.Indonesian Airlines have experienced 104 accidents and 2,353 related fatalities due to poor maintenance, pilot training, communications or mechanical failures and air-traffic control problems. That’s no way to run an airline.ReplyLike(6)

TheNewNormToday, 10:50 AMComments (213)This was completely unrelated to the Max issues. Most likely an age related/maintenance related failure.ReplyLike(3)

VOLK904Today, 10:42 AMComments (6)There is no reason to compare it to the Max issue. As noted the 737-500 was 27 years old and did not have the MACA but on radar the jet did no behave like the max jets. Pretty much went straight down. Sure seems like a massive failure, pilot action or Even a bomb. There is thousands of 737’s flying every day many by small airlines with poor maintenance and pilot training. You cannot blame Boeing for every crash.ReplyLike(3)

TryingToBeWiseToday, 10:34 AMComments (818)I am relieved (and somewhat proud) of the SA community for calling this article what it is.. Rank speculation to generate clicks.We have no clue what this is related to.. in fact, if Boeing drops >10% I may buy.Cheers to all!ReplyLike(12)

OldSchoolInvestorToday, 10:29 AMComments (73)This is idiotic speculation.There is pretty much zero chance an isolated crash of 27 year old Boeing 737 was due to manufacturing or design issue.May take months to determine, but likely maintainance or piloting issue.There is zero correlation with the two 737MAX accidents, as this stupid author seems to be trying to imply.ReplyLike(15)

lgladeToday, 10:29 AMPremiumComments (13)Twenty year old airplane. Do you blame Ford if your 20-year old Tempest with 347,000 miles on it craps out on the side of the road?ReplyLike(4)

Merit1Today, 10:38 AMComments (370)@lgladeExcellent point — But for the record, GM’s Pontiac division made the “Tempest” (I once owned a 64 Tempest bought second hand…Oh, oh — starting to show my age…)ReplyLike(3)

garwood69Today, 1:25 PMComments (1)@lglade Is the Ford Tempest akin to the Pontiac Thunderbird? Or did you really mean the Chrysler Taurus?ReplyLike

lobeskcToday, 2:17 PMComments (61)@lglade did you mean 20 year old Tempo?ReplyLikeSee More Replies

yellow ledbetterToday, 10:25 AMComments (1.65K)Awful article! It’s an older airplane.ReplyLike(7)Add A Comment

Published by technofiend1

Kazan- Kazan National Research Technical University Казанский национальный исследовательский технический университет имени А. Н. Туполева he graduated in Economics in 1982

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