Southwest Airlines Pilots Association sues Boeing over Boeing 737 MAX grounding

The Southwest Airlines Pilots Association (SWAPA) has announced the filing of a lawsuit against The Boeing Company for deliberately misleading the organization and its pilots about the 737 MAX aircraft, the company said.

The lawsuit, filed in the District Court of Dallas County, Texas, alleges that SWAPA pilots agreed to fly the 737 MAX aircraft based on Boeing´s representations that it was airworthy and essentially the same as the time-tested 737 aircraft that its pilots have flown for years. These representations were false. Boeing´s errors cost the lives of 346 people, damaged the critical bond between pilots and passengers, and reduced opportunities for air travel across the United States and around the world.

The grounding of the 737 MAX has caused the elimination of more than 30,000 scheduled Southwest flights. This is expected to reduce the airline´s passenger service 8% by the end of 2019, resulting in compensation losses for SWAPA pilots in excess of USD 100 million. Southwest is the largest operator of the 737 MAX, and the aircraft is not expected to return to passenger service until the first quarter of 2020.

Southwest Airlines Pilots Association (SWAPA) is a non-profit employee organization and the sole bargaining unit for the more than 9,700 pilots of Southwest Airlines. SWAPA, now in its 41st year, works to provide a secure and rewarding career for Southwest pilots and their families through negotiating contracts, defending contractual rights, protecting their professional interests, and actively promoting professionalism and safety.