Two deadly crashes involving Boeing’s newest airplane in less than six months puts in jeopardy not only the credibility of the manufacturer, but also new technologies actively being pushed by the world’s top tech firms.
All Boeing 737 MAX 8 planes operated by global carriers were grounded earlier this month after an Ethiopian Airlines aircraft crashed shortly after take-off, taking a steep nosedive not far from Nairobi.
The fatal accident which claimed 157 lives followed a similar crash in Indonesia, which killed all 189 people on board in October.
The two crashes appear to have something in common. The crews of both aircraft reportedly struggled with the MAX 8 autopilot system which pointed the nose of the airplane down before the crash.
The implications of the deadly incidents are much bigger than aviation itself, according to Alessandro Bruno, an independent international affairs and aerospace industry analyst.
“I think this accident shows the limitations of artificial intelligence and it should convince Elon Musk and Tesla to slow down efforts to push down self-driving cars,” the expert said, highlighting that the latest crashes occurred due to software problems, not mechanical ones.
A recall of Boeing’s flagship planes, lawsuits from global air carriers and a fall in the manufacturer’s market value may undoubtedly result in the firm lagging behind Airbus, its key rival, according to international finance experts, who say that if this scandal is not ‘extinguished’ in time, it may trigger deep concerns over the entire sector of artificial intelligence and its credibility.