March 2 U.S. aviation regulators on Monday plan
to propose improving cockpit automation to help prevent pilot
errors that have caused fatal airline crashes, according to a
The Federal Aviation Administration wants cockpit automation
fixes in nearly 500 Boeing Co 737 planes to ensure pilots
have adequate safeguards if airspeed falls too low, particularly
during landing approaches, the Wall Street Journal reported on
Foreign regulators are likely to follow suit, the newspaper
The FAA was not immediately available for comment.
Boeing, in an email to Reuters, said the company "works
closely with the FAA to monitor the fleet for potential safety
issues and take appropriate actions."
The U.S. aircraft manufacturer said "the proposed rule
mandates actions Boeing previously recommended to operators."
The crash of Asiana Airlines Flight 214 into a seawall in
San Francisco airport on July 6 raised questions about whether
pilots relied too much on automated flight controls in large
The pilots of that flight realized too late that the plane
was flying too low and much too slowly even though they had set
a control system, called an auto-throttle, to keep the Boeing
777 at a constant speed.