Norwegian Air formally filed the lawsuit against Boeing on Monday, July 13th. The airline accuses Boeing of fraud and breach of contract. The paperwork was initially submitted on June 29th.
Legal documents from the Illinois Northern District Court show that Norwegian and its subsidiary Arctic Aviation Assets DAC are jointly suing the aircraft manufacturer.
On June 29, Norwegian also sent out a Stock Exchange announcement where it wrote that the company was canceling the remaining order for 92 of the 737 MAXs and for 5 of the 787 Dreamliners. In addition, the airline announced that it had filed a compensation case against Boeing.
What’s Norwegian Air’s lawsuit against Boeing about?
Norwegian’s lawyer writes in the lawsuit that the lawsuit is due to Boeing’s “gross negligence, fraud and breach of contract” related to the purchases of the 737 Max and 787 Dreamliner aircraft.
Key points of the lawsuit
“Instead of delivering what they promised, Boeing has deliberately misled and omitted information, shown gross negligence and clumsy production, and made aircraft with significantly impaired value and utility, which in the case of the Max aircraft had tragic and fatal consequences.”
The lawyer also claims that Boeing’s presentation of the Max planes “was full of lies” without Norwegian being aware of the facts.
Boeing exerted relentless pressure on its engineers from the start of the program to prioritize quantity over quality, proven they used “Jedi tricks” to get the FAA to approve the aircraft’s design based on statements from its own employees, and systematically cut corners along the way a very flawed design process that made a plane full of errors “.
Norwegian claims that the Dreamliner-problems have constantly grounded several of its 787s for maintenance problems, which has forced the airline to cancel thousands of flights as a result.
Norwegian’s harsh words for the 737 MAX
According to Norwegian’s lawsuit, things went wrong from the beginning, when Boeing first started its work on the 737 MAX:
“Boeing’s guiding principle in developing MAX was not safety, but rather to accelerate the market and generate profit. While doing this, Boeing repeatedly hid information from the FAA (the US Civil Aviation Authority), the airlines and the public “,
Norwegian’s lawyers wrote in the introduction.
The lawyers continue,
«Norwegian knew nothing of this. Publicly, Boeing Norwegian and other customers sold a bogus story about a safe, state-of-the-art aircraft that Boeing knew they had not built. The consequences of Boeing’s haste and neglect of security were to prove fatal “.
Further accusations in the lawsuit states:
“Other cases continue to surface as MAX is investigated, and all of these will further delay the possibility that MAX will ever leave the ground.”
Norwegian Air’s B787 Dreamliner problems
- The B787 Dreamliner first had problems with the overheating of batteries during the take-off phase.
- On top of that, the engines from Rolls-Royce had problems, requiring frequent maintenance inspections and service.
Norwegian’s lawyers believe that Boeing:
“refused to deal with the problems of the Dreamliner, “which Boeing knows are defective and which will probably be out of service for maintenance at least 20 percent of the time”.
What does Norwegian want out of the lawsuit?
Norwegian is requesting that the court rules in favor of the airline focusing on seven points. Four of the points have to do with Norwegian Air’s desire to cancel the purchase agreement for 97 MAX aircraft. It also includes a service agreement.
Norwegian believes the airline is entitled to:
- a refund of the advances that the airline has already paid for the aircraft,
– and –
- compensation for the problems that have affected the 737 Max and 787 Dreamliner aircraft.
“Boeing must take back its defective aircraft and compensate Norwegian for the enormous financial damage Boeing’s behavior has caused to Norwegian,”
Norwegian is also requesting compensation for inconveniences that were caused “due to Boeing’s offenses and breach of contract”. The court is to decide the amount. The airline also wants legal costs awarded in its favor.
Is Boeing guilty of fraud and breach of contract against Norwegian Air?
Well, that will be up to the court to decide.
As many Norwegian passengers have experienced, the airline has indeed had many delays and cancellations of flights, citing mechanical issues.
With the airline’s reasonable expectations of solid mechanical reliability of its brand new multi-million dollar 787s and MAXs, one cannot help feeling sympathy for Norwegian Air.
Passengers can be merciless and with no or little tolerance for airline delays and cancellations. Unexpected mechanical problems have hit Norwegian hard over the years.
Still, Boeing has decades of a solid reputation for making the greatest, most reliable airplanes.
The result of the lawsuit is up to the court to decide. So, stay tuned…
Featured Image: NAI plane: Unsplash / Boeing 787-10: Wikimedia.
By the way, there is an additional Norwegian lawsuit taking place… You can read about a former flight attendant’s lawsuit against Norwegian here.