‘Dutch Roll’ Incident Prompts FAA/NTSB Investigation

Pilots managed to regain control of the aircraft and land safely.

Southwest Boeing 737s at Paine Field. [Credit: AirlineGeeks | Katie Bailey]

The FAA and National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) are investigating yet another alarming incident in which a Boeing 737 Max 8 experienced a “Dutch roll” at roughly 32,000 feet —a rare phenomenon when the aircraft rolls in one direction and yaws in the other. 

The incident occurred May 25 during a Southwest Airlines flight from Phoenix to Oakland, California. Pilots managed to regain control of the aircraft and land safely, although the aircraft sustained substantial damage to the standby power control unit (PCU), according to a report.  

On Thursday, the FAA released a statement indicating it was working closely with the NTSB and Boeing to determine the cause of the event while noting that no other airlines have reported similar issues. Southwest also stated it would cooperate with the agencies and the NTSB expects to have a preliminary report within 30 days.

The incident marks the latest setback for Boeing, as the manufacturer deals with intense scrutiny following the January door plug blowout on an Alaska Airlines 737 Max 9 flight, leading to a temporary grounding of the fleet.

Editor’s Note: This article first appeared on AVweb.

Amelia Walsh
Amelia WalshContributor
Amelia Walsh is a private pilot who enjoys flying her family’s Columbia 350. She is based in Colorado and loves all things outdoors including skiing, hiking, and camping.

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