Pilots say FAA proposal for Boeing Max training needs work

Pilots at some U.S. airlines think the government can improve its proposal for pilot training on the Boeing 737 Max

The union representing Southwest Airlines pilots said Monday that the FAA should reduce the number of steps pilots must remember and carry out in the type of emergency that occurred before both Max crashes.

The union said “error rates increase exponentially” with long checklists, and pilots in a simulator “found it difficult to recall the steps in order.”

Pilots at American Airlines said that Max pilots should train for such an emergency every two years, not every three years as the FAA proposes.

Chicago-based Boeing has spent two years making changes to an automated flight-control system that has been implicated in the crashes. The system, called MCAS, pushed the noses of planes down based on faulty sensor readings, and pilots were unable to regain control.

The FAA proposed new training in how pilots respond to an unexpected nose-down pitch, including practicing recovery techniques in flight simulators.

Regulators around the world grounded the Max after the Ethiopia crash, which came less than five months after a previous crash in Indonesia. In all, 346 people died.