The FAA is demanding an explanation after it was reported that Boeing hid internal messages about the 737 Max software system that's been linked to two deadly crashes.
Reuters reported Friday that Boeing had turned over instant messages between two employees suggesting that the aircraft maker may have misled the FAA about the system, known as MCAS, during the 737 Max's original certification. The company reportedly discovered the messages "some months ago."
According to documents published by Reuters, a Boeing pilot working on the 737 Max told a fellow pilot in private messages that the MCAS was "running rampant" during flight simulations; he called the issue "egregious". In another message, he reportedly said he "basically lied to the regulators (unknowingly)" about the system's performance. That exchange reportedly occurred in November 2016, years before the fatal 737 Max crashes.
Boeing's 737 Max has been grounded worldwide since March after two deadly crashes involving the aircraft occurred within months of each other. They killed more than 300 people. Investigators say the automated MCAS feature malfunctioned in both cases, causing the aircraft to go into unrecoverable nosedives.
In a statement, the FAA said it found "the substance of the document concerning" and that it was "disappointed" in Boeing for not bringing the messages to its attention immediately after they were discovered. The agency says it has shared the document with "the appropriate Congressional committees."
Additional reporting from Newsy affiliate CNN.