Boeing Offers $100 Million To 737 Max Crash Families Including Two Moroccans

VARESE, ITALY – MAY 14: A view of the Boeing 737 Max plane of Air Italy during the unveiling of Air Italy’s Boeing 737 Max at Malpensa airport on May 14, 2018 in Varese, Italy. (Photo by Pier Marco Tacca/Getty Images)

Rabat – Boeing has offered to pay $100 Million following a string of lawsuits from the families of the October 2018 and March 2019 crash victims; Press conferences and a number of other congressional hearings have also taken place during investigations into the cause of the two aeroplane crashes.

The first 737 Max crash was the JT610 flight, owned by the Indonesian airline Lion Air, which went down in the Java Sea off Jakarta in October 29, 2018. A near identical aircraft, ET302 flight of Ethiopian Airlines, crashed on  March 10, 2019.

The two incidents killed 346 people including international experts and members of government delegations who were heading for an international conference on the environment in Nairobi.

Two Moroccans, travelling to Nairobi for the conference, were among the victims. The first, Ahmed Chehab worked for the Regional Directorate of Sustainable Development in the region of Drâa-Tafilalet. The second Moroccan victim was Hassan Essiyouti, a university professor at Hassan II University. 

In a press release, Boeing described the proposed $100 Million as an “initial investment” over the years. It also revealed its intention to work with local governments and non-profit organizations to cover living expenses and boost economic growth in areas impacted by crashing planes.

Dennis Muilenburg, Boeing’s president and CEO, said in its press release that the company is “sorry for the tragic loss of lives in both of these accidents and these lives lost will continue to weigh heavily on our hearts and minds for years to come.”

“The families and loved ones of those on board have our deepest sympathies, and we hope this initial outreach can help bring them comfort,” he added.

However, the lawyers of victims’ families dismissed Boeing’s initiative.

Nomi Husain, the lawyer representing some of the  ET302 victims’ families, told the BBC’s transport correspondent that Boeing’s payment “doesn’t come anywhere close to compensating the families for what has been taken from them.”

He further added that Boeing “put profit over safety to get their number-one selling plane to market.”

Robert Clifford, who is legally representing 23 families, said to the BBC: “this type of offer so early in the litigation process is unprecedented. Because there is still so much to learn about what occurred, it also appears to be disingenuous.”