Families of passengers of Lion Air flight JT610 stand as they look at the belongings of the passengers at Tanjung Priok port in Jakarta, Indonesia, in this file photo taken on on October 31 2018. Picture: REUTERS/BEAWIHARTA
Families of passengers of Lion Air flight JT610 stand as they look at the belongings of the passengers at Tanjung Priok port in Jakarta, Indonesia, in this file photo taken on on October 31 2018. Picture: REUTERS/BEAWIHARTA

Jakarta — The family of an Indonesian man killed in a Lion Air jet crash is suing Boeing, alleging that the accident may have been caused by a problem with the flight-control system in its newest 737 plane.

The father of Rio Nanda Pratama filed the lawsuit on Wednesday in the US state of Illinois, where the plane manufacturer is headquartered, over his son's death.

Pratama was among 189 people killed when the Boeing 737-MAX plunged into the Java Sea on October 29, less than 20 minutes after leaving Jakarta on a routine flight to Pangkal Pinang city. There were no survivors.

The 737-MAX in question had only begun service for budget carrier Lion Air in August.

Questions have swirled about Boeing's alleged failure to tell airlines and pilots about changes to an anti-stall system that is being investigated for its possible links to the crash.

The jet's engines are heavier than those installed on prior versions, meaning the plane can stall under different conditions.

Boeing made modifications to the anti-stall system without informing air carriers and their crews, according to the Allied Pilots Association.

"The government investigators typically will not make a determination of who is at fault, and just compensation to these families will not be provided by the governmental investigations," Curtis Miner from Colson Hicks Eidson, which filed the lawsuit, said in a statement.

"That is the critical role of private lawsuits in a tragedy like this."

There is still no answer to what caused one of the world's newest and most advanced commercial passenger planes to crash. A preliminary report is expected at the end of November.

Pratama's family could not be immediately reached.

AFP