Alaskan Airlines passengers could be crime victims for Boeing door incident: FBI – Washington Examiner

The passengers on an Alaska Airlines Boeing flight that blew out its door plug midflight could be “victim[s] of a crime,” according to the FBI.

This Boeing 737 MAX 9 plane was forced to make an emergency landing in January when the incident happened, and no passengers were injured. Even when the door made impact with the ground, there were no reported injuries.

Still the Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board launched an investigation into the matter. The FBI and Department of Justice have opened their own criminal investigations as well. Subsequently, the FBI’s victim specialist from its Seattle office sent all involved passengers a letter this week.

“I’m contacting you because we have identified you as a possible victim of a crime,” the letter read. “A criminal investigation can be a lengthy undertaking, and, for several reasons, we cannot tell you about its progress at this time. A victim of a federal crime is entitled to receive certain services.”

This image taken Sunday, Jan. 7, 2024, and released by the National Transportation Safety Board, shows a section of Alaska Airlines Flight 1282 that is missing a panel on a Boeing 737-9 MAX in Portland, Oregon. (NTSB via AP)

These passengers are likely to continue to receive updates on Boeing’s investigative status, criminal charges filed, outcome of charges, scheduled court proceedings, and anything else related to the case if they are considered crime victims. The FBI will also likely inform them of eligible medical and social services.


There were 171 passengers and six crew members on the flight.

Following the incident, the FAA ordered Boeing 737 MAX 9 planes to be temporarily grounded on the terms of an emergency airworthiness directive for the planes, which required “immediate inspections” on the aircraft before they were allowed in the air again. The directive instructed operators on what to look out for to ensure the safety of passengers.