In March earlier this year Boeing was at the centre of two plane crashes that occurred on the African continent, with an Ethiopian Airlines flight in particular coming into the spotlight, as it claimed the lives of 157 people and left no survivors.
The aircraft in question has the Boeing 737 Max 8, with local operator Comair deciding to ground all of those planes for fears of potential issues as well.
Now Boeing has announced that it will create a fund of $100 million to “address the family and community needs” of the people affected by the crashes of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 and Lion Air Flight 610.
“These funds will support education, hardship and living expenses for impacted families, community programs, and economic development in impacted communities. Boeing will partner with local governments and non-profit organizations to address these needs. This initial investment will be made over multiple years,” explained the firm in a press statement.
“We know every person who steps aboard one of our airplanes places their trust in us. We are focused on re-earning that trust and confidence from our customers and the flying public in the months ahead,” adds Dennis Muilenburg, Boeing chairman, president and CEO.
Whether this fund will have the desired effect remains to be seen, but in our view the damage has already been done to both Ethiopian Airlines and Lion Air, as well as the victims of both crashes. As such Boeing will likely bounce back from these incidents relatively unscathed, especially considering they are one fo the largest commercial aircraft manufacturers in the world.
Boeing also notes that the creation of this fund will not impact ongoing lawsuits from the families of crash victims, and is not designed as a means to stop any legal proceedings.
“As the investigations continue, Boeing is cooperating fully with the investigating authorities. We won’t comment on individual lawsuits directly,” an unnamed spokesperson told The Verge.