Family of Jackson Musoni, a citizen of Rwanda who died in the Ethiopian Airlines 737 MAX crash, file a lawsuit against Boeing Co in US federal court.
Investigators into a Boeing 737 MAX crash in Ethiopia that killed 157 people have reached a preliminary conclusion that an anti-stall system was activated before the plane hit the ground, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday, citing people briefed on the matter.
The newspaper said the preliminary findings from the "black box" recorders were subject to revisions, adding a preliminary report from Ethiopian investigators was expected within days.
The plane crashed on March 10 shortly after take off from Addis Ababa.
Investigators into a deadly 737 MAX crash in Indonesia in October have also focused on the new anti-stall system, called MCAS. Boeing on Wednesday said a planned software fix would prevent repeated operation of the system that is at the centre of safety concerns.
Boeing's fastest-selling 737 MAX jet, with orders worth more than $500 billion at list prices, has been grounded globally by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), although airlines are still allowed to fly them without passengers to move planes to other a airports.
US lawsuit filed against Boeing over Ethiopian Airlines crash
A lawsuit against Boeing Co has been filed in US federal court on Thursday in what appears to be the first suit over the March 10 Ethiopian Airlines 737 MAX crash.
The lawsuit was filed in Chicago federal court by the family of Jackson Musoni, a citizen of Rwanda, and alleges that Boeing, which manufactures the 737 MAX, had defectively designed the automated flight control system.
Boeing said it could not comment on the lawsuit.
"Boeing ... is working with t he authorities to evaluate new information as it becomes available," it said, adding all inquiries about the ongoing accident investigation must be directed to the investigating authorities.
The 737 MAX planes were grounded worldwide following the Ethiopian Airlines disaster, which came five months after a Lion Air crash in Indonesia that killed 189 people.
Boeing said on Wednesday it had reprogrammed software on its 737 MAX to prevent erroneous data from triggering an anti-stall system that is facing mounting scrutiny in the wake of two deadly nose-down crashes in the pa st five months.
The plane-maker said the anti-stall system, which is believed to have repeatedly forced the nose lower in at least one of the accidents, in Indonesia last October, would only do so once per event after sensing a problem, giving pilots more control.
The crash of Boeing's passenger jet in Ethiopia raised the chances that families of the victims, even non-US residents, will be able to sue in US courts, where payouts are much larger than in other countries, some legal experts have said.
Wednesday's complaint was filed by Musoni's three minor children, who are Dutch citizens residing in Belgium.
The lawsuit says Boeing failed to warn the public, airlines and pilots of the airplane's allegedly erroneous sensors, causing the aircraft to dive automatically and uncontrollably.
Ethiopian officials and some analysts have said the Ethiopian Airlines jet behaved in a similar pattern as the 737 MAX involved in October's Lion Air disaster.
The investigation into the March crash, which is being led by the Ethiopian Transport Ministry, is still at an early stage.