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Boeing sees six-fold rise in employee concerns on product safety, quality

FILE PHOTO: Boeing employees work during a media tour of the Boeing 737 MAX at the Boeing plant in Renton, Washington

(Reuters) - Boeing saw a six-fold increase in submissions from its employees raising concerns related to the safety of products and services during the first two months of 2024, compared with the same period last year, the planemaker said on Friday.

The dramatic rise in these reports occurred after an incident on Jan. 5 involving a mid-air cabin panel blowout on a newly minted Alaska Airlines 737 MAX 9 jet, Boeing said in its annual safety report.

In February, an expert panel reviewing Boeing's safety management processes had found a "disconnect" between the planemaker's senior management and employees involved in its safety culture.

"Our actions are focused on making further improvements to ensure safety, compliance and conformance of our products and services, without compromise," said Mike Delaney, Boeing's chief aerospace safety officer.

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The Jan. 5 incident has put Boeing under heightened scrutiny and has prompted U.S. regulators to curb production levels of the company's bestselling 737 MAX jets until it starts to address safety issues.

(Reporting by Shivansh Tiwary in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel)