Speaking of propaganda

What the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority says about itself:

Metrorail provides safe, clean, reliable transit service for more than 600,000 customers a day throughout the Washington, DC area.

“Safe” and “reliable” they say…

Compare the above with what the National Transportation Safety Board says:

Metro officials have been aware since 2017 of equipment problems that appear to have caused the train derailment last week in Northern Virginia, a preliminary investigation by federal safety investigators showed.

Metro train 407, which derailed on the Blue Line on Oct. 12, had two other minor derailments the same day and was able to get back onto the tracks, Jennifer Homendy, chair of the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said at a news conference Monday morning.

The train derailed and re-railed itself once near the Arlington Cemetery station at about 3:20 p.m. and again near the Largo Town Center station at about 4:15 p.m.

After the third and final derailment, the train with 187 people on board got stuck in a dark tunnel near the Arlington Cemetery station. Riders had to walk the equivalent of about six football fields to get to safety.

The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) has known of problems with the wheel assemblies of 7000-series railcars for years, Homendy said.

“We were made aware that WMATA was aware of this situation with the wheel assemblies going back to 2017,” she said.

I wonder what the consequences will be to the government run Metro compared to a non government entity which did something similar.

A Boeing test pilot is being prosecuted over 737 Max crashes. I expect no prosecutions because of the Metro railcar issues and the probability of people being fired is low.

H/T to Paul K. for the email.


2 thoughts on “Speaking of propaganda

  1. Sure. Blame the test pilot, not the designers, programmers, and managers.

    What do we learn from this? Never, ever talk to the government. About anything.

  2. The blame for the crashes should be divided between the Boeing managers that decided to save a few bucks by making one cockpit indicator for two angle-of-attack sensors standard, the Boeing salesmen that sold the MAX as needing almost no pilot re-training, and the air lines that didn’t adequately train their pilots.

    What apparently happened in these crashes:

    1. The angle-of-attack sensor on one side was broken (it sticks out in the airstream and can be bumped and bent), falsely signaling that one wing was in a stall (too much nose-up).

    2. The cockpit indicator could only show one angle-of-attack, and could not show that there was an unreasonably large disagreement between the two sides. (There is an extra-cost option with two indicators and a light when they disagree too much, but it wasn’t ordered by the airlines that experienced these crashes.) Therefore, the only way the pilot could know about the broken sensor was to correlate other readings and the feel of the airplane – that can take too long, especially with a pilot undertrained on the MAX.

    3. The autopilot takes the worst of the readings from both sides and reacts to it. With the broken sensor, it thinks the airplane is going into a severe nose-up position and starts cranking the tail trim for nose-down, continuing all the way it can go. At maximum, this trim brings the nose down even if the pilot is pulling the control wheel to the stops for nose-up.

    4. This auto-trim action is indicated in the cockpit by a wheel whirring between the pilot and copilot seats, and can be overridden (and the auto-trim disengaged) just by grabbing and stopping that wheel, then cranking it back to the normal range by hand. BUT the undertrained pilots either didn’t know that, or froze because of not understanding what was happening with the airplane.

    5. And so the airplane dived right into the ground.

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