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Wreckage from the March crash in Ethiopia. File photo: Michael Tewelde/AFP/Getty Images

Ethiopia’s Transport Minister Dagmawit Moges recommended on Thursday that Boeing review its aircraft control system after preliminary findings showed Ethiopian Airlines crew followed procedure as the 737 Max jet nose-dived several times before it crashed.

The crew performed all the procedures repeatedly provided by the manufacturer but was not able to control the aircraft.
— Ethiopia's Transport Minister Dagmawit Moges

Details: Moges said since "repetitive uncommanded nose-down'' conditions had been noticed it's "recommended that the aircraft control system shall be reviewed by the manufacturer."

  • Ethiopian Airlines issued a statement on Twitter following the release of the findings, stating the preliminary report "clearly showed" its pilots on Flight 302 followed Boeing's recommendations.

Driving the news: Boeing responded to the release of the preliminary investigation report of Ethiopian Flight 302 later on Thursday, stating the company will take "any and all additional steps necessary to enhance the safety of our aircraft."

  • In a statement on the initial findings of the report, the Federal Aviation Administration said: "The ECAA investigation remains ongoing, with the participation of the FAA and the NTSB. We continue to work toward a full understanding of all aspects of this accident. As we learn more about the accident and findings become available, we will take appropriate action."

Why it matters: A total of 157 people were killed in the March 10 crash shortly after takeoff from Addis Ababa. It was the second fatal crash involving a Boeing 737 Max jet within 6 months — prompting scores of countries, including the U.S., to suspend Boeing 737 Max flights.

The big picture: Boeing is facing investigations from the Transportation Department's Inspector General, Justice Department and other entities examining how the 737 MAX was certified as safe to fly in 2017 and judged to be safe enough to continue to fly after the October crash of a Lion Air 737 MAX 8.

  • The Senate Commerce Committee is investigating multiple whistleblower complaints accusing the FAA of improperly training its aviation safety inspectors, including some who reviewed Boeing's 737 MAX 8 jets.
  • Canadian and European authorities are conducting their own investigations.
  • Boeing has been working on new fixes to the MCAS software for its 737 MAX series jet.

"As previously announced, the update adds additional layers of protection and will prevent erroneous data from causing MCAS activation. Flight crews will always have the ability to override MCAS and manually control the airplane," the Boeing statement indicated.

Go deeper: Everything else you need to know about the Boeing 737 MAX crashes

Go deeper

Updated 5 hours ago - World

UK government: Kremlin has plan "to install pro-Russian leadership" in Ukraine

British Foreign Secretary Elizabeth Truss. Photo: Gints Ivuskans / AFP via Getty Images

The United Kingdom's Foreign Secretary on Saturday night said the government has "information that indicates the Russian Government is looking to install a pro-Russian leader in Kyiv as it considers whether to invade and occupy Ukraine."

Driving the news: U.S. National Security Council spokeswoman Emily Horne called the intelligence "deeply concerning" in a statement to Axios. The Biden administration has said Russia is actively manufacturing a pretext for invasion and warned that Putin could use joint military exercises in Belarus as cover to invade from the north.

Updated 6 hours ago - Science

This powerful new accelerator looks for keys to the center of atoms

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Nuclear physicists trying to piece together how atoms are built are about to get a powerful new tool.

Why it matters: When the Facility for Rare Isotope Beams begins experiments later this spring, physicists from around the world will use the particle accelerator to better understand the inner workings of atoms that make up all the matter that can be seen in the universe.

Updated 6 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Health: FDA OKs antiviral drug remdesivir for non-hospitalized COVID patients — Walensky: CDC language "pivoting" on "fully vaccinated" — Pfizer and Moderna boosters overwhelmingly prevent Omicron hospitalizations, CDC finds.
  2. Vaccines: The case for Operation Warp Speed 2.0 — Teens and adults missed 37 million vaccinations during COVID — Team USA 100% vaccinated against COVID ahead of Beijing Olympics — Kids' COVID vaccination rates are particularly low in rural America — Annual COVID vaccine preferable to boosters, says Pfizer CEO.
  3. Politics: Arizona governor sues Biden administration over COVID funds tied to mandates — Biden concedes U.S. should have done more testing — Arizona says it "will not be intimidated" by Biden on anti-mask school policies.
  4. World: American Airlines flight to London forced to turn around over mask dispute — WHO: COVID health emergency could end this year — Greece imposes vaccine mandate for people 60 and older — Austria approves COVID vaccine mandate for adults — Beijing officials urge COVID-19 "emergency mode" before Winter Olympics.
  5. Variant tracker