Boeing to make $50m in payments to 737 MAX crash victims’ families

WASHINGTON: Boeing Co said it will dedicate half of a $100 million fund it created after two crashes of its 737 MAX planes to provide payments to families of those killed, with veteran US compensation expert Ken Feinberg hired by the world’s largest plane maker to oversee the distribution.
The announcement of Feinberg’s hiring came minutes before a US House of Representatives hearing featuring dramatic testimony by Paul Njoroge, a father who lost three children, his wife and mother-in-law in a 737 MAX Ethiopian Air crash in March.
Feinberg told Reuters his team will “start immediately drafting a claims protocol for those eligible,” with the first meeting with officials from Chicago-based Boeing later this week in Washington. Feinberg has administered many compensation funds including for victims of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States, the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, General Motors ignition switch crashes and numerous school shootings. The 737 MAX, Boeing’s best-selling jet, was grounded globally in March following the Ethiopian Airlines crash after a similar Lion Air disaster in Indonesia in October. The two crashes killed 346 people.
Njoroge, 35, told reporters after he testified he did not think the public would trust Boeing going forward. “Do you want to fly in those planes? Do you want your children to fly in those planes?” Njoroge asked. “I don’t have any more children.” Njoroge told a House subcommittee he still has “nightmares about how (his children) must have clung to their mother crying” during the doomed flight. Njoroge, who was born in Kenya and lives in Canada, said Boeing has blamed “innocent pilots who had no knowledge and were given no information of the new and flawed MCAS system that could overpower pilots.” — Reuters