Malaysia Airlines incidents
2014 has seen two disastrous incidents for Malaysia Airlines. In March, flight MH 370 disappeared and has yet to be found – all 239 passengers and crew on board assumed dead. At the time of its disappearance, and if the presumption of a loss of all lives aboard can be verified, Flight 370 would have been the deadliest aviation incident in the history of Malaysia Airlines and the deadliest involving a Boeing 777. Flight 370 was surpassed in both aspects just 131 days later by Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, another Boeing 777 that was (reportedly) shot down over the Ukraine on 17 July 2014, killing all 298 people aboard. It has been asked whether the MH17 tragedy was “an incident of bad luck or poor risk management by planning a flight path over a known hostile ‘hot’ territory” – although Malaysia Airlines has stated that the flight route has been declared safe by the International Civil Aviation Organisation.
There is no doubt that Malaysia Airlines have been and will continue to be seriously impacted by these incidents. There have been suggestions that the airline may well have to rebrand itself in order to overcome potentially irreversible reputational damage. These incidents have revealed several lessons for business – not least about the dangers of poor crisis management and reputation management.
As a Risk Manager, are you geared for crisis management?
What is the most common blind spot when it comes to managing reputational risk in 2014? Do you have a company “travel risk accumulation” policy?