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    Pros and cons of McDonnell's position as expressed by the VP.

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    When a McDonnell Douglas DC-10 crashed over Iowa, a subsequent investigation suggested that the planeâ??s hydraulic systems did not provide enough protection. The DC-10 had three separate hydraulic systems, all of which failed when an engine exploded. The engine threw off shreds of metal that severed two of the lines, and the third line required power from the demolished engine that was no longer available. The DC-10, unlike other commercial jets, had no shutoff valves that might have stemmed the flow of hydraulic fluid. Lockheed's similar L-1011 tri-jet had four hydraulic systems. A McDonnell Douglas VP said at the time. "You can always be extreme and not have a practical airplane. You can be perfectly safe and never get off the ground."

    a) Discuss the pros and cons of McDonnell's position as expressed by the VP.
    c) What strategy would you have recommended McDonnell Douglas follow to address the failure? Why?

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    Solution Preview

    a) Discuss the pros and cons of McDonnell's position as expressed by the VP:

    The pros of McDonnell's position as expressed by the VP are that an airplane can malfunction at any time, an airplane can have malfunctioning parts at any time, and at times there can just be a fluke that can cause a crash, all that you can do nothing about. An airplane maker can create the safest plane, and yet still it can crash. Further, McDonnell is trying to say that even if an extreme was undertaken, by putting in four hydraulic systems, a crash still cannot ...

    Solution Summary

    The pros and cons of McDonnell's position as expressed by the VP is determined.

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