Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302

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Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302
Ethiopian Airlines ET-AVJ takeoff from TLV (46461974574).jpg
ET-AVJ, the aircraft involved in the accident, seen in February 2019
Accident
Date10 March 2019 (2019-03-10)
SummaryCrashed shortly after take-off; under investigation
SiteTulu Fara village near Bishoftu, Ethiopia
8°52′37″N39°15′04″E / 8.87694°N 39.25111°E / 8.87694; 39.25111 Coordinates: 8°52′37″N39°15′04″E / 8.87694°N 39.25111°E / 8.87694; 39.25111 [1]
Aircraft
Aircraft type Boeing 737 MAX 8
Operator Ethiopian Airlines
IATA flight No.ET302
ICAO flight No.ETH302
Call signETHIOPIAN 302
Registration ET-AVJ
Flight origin Addis Ababa Bole International Airport, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Destination Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, Nairobi, Kenya
Occupants157
Passengers149
Crew8
Fatalities157
Survivors0

Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302

Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 was a scheduled international passenger flight from Addis Ababa Bole International Airport in Ethiopia to Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi, Kenya. On 10 March 2019, the Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft which operated the flight crashed near the town of Bishoftu six minutes after takeoff, killing all 157 people aboard. The cause of the accident is under investigation.

Addis Ababa Bole International Airport International airport serving Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Addis Ababa Bole International Airport is in the city of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. It is located in the Bole area, 6 km (3.7 mi) southeast of the city centre and 65 km (40 mi) north of Debre Zeyit. The airport was formerly known as Haile Selassie I International Airport. It is the main hub of Ethiopian Airlines, the national airline that serves destinations in Ethiopia and throughout the African continent, as well as nonstop service to Asia, Europe, North America and South America. The airport is also the base of the Ethiopian Aviation Academy. As of June 2018, nearly 450 flights per day were departing from and arriving at the airport.

Ethiopia Country in East Africa

Ethiopia, officially the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, is a country in the northeastern part of Africa, known as the Horn of Africa. It shares borders with Eritrea to the north, Djibouti to the northeast, the de facto state of Somaliland and Somalia to the east, Kenya to the south, South Sudan to the west and Sudan to the northwest. With over 102 million inhabitants, Ethiopia is the most populous landlocked country in the world and the second-most populous nation on the African continent with a total area of 1,100,000 square kilometres (420,000 sq mi). Its capital and largest city is Addis Ababa, which lies a few miles west of the East African Rift that splits the country into the Nubian and Somali tectonic plates.

Jomo Kenyatta International Airport international airport serving Nairobi, Kenya

Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, is an international airport in Nairobi, the capital of and largest city in Kenya. Located in the Embakasi suburb 15 kilometres (9 mi) southeast of Nairobi's central business district, the airport has scheduled flights to destinations in over 50 countries. Originally named Embakasi Airport, the airport's name was changed in 1978 to honor Jomo Kenyatta, Kenya's first president and prime minister. The airport served over 7 million passengers in 2016, making it the seventh busiest airport in passenger traffic on the continent.

Contents

Flight 302 is the deadliest accident involving an Ethiopian Airlines aircraft to date, surpassing the fatal hijacking of Flight 961 resulting in a crash near the Comoros in 1996. [2] It is also the deadliest aircraft accident to occur in Ethiopia, surpassing the crash of an Ethiopian Air Force Antonov An-26 in 1982, which killed 73. [3]

Ethiopian Airlines flag-carrier airline of Ethiopia

Ethiopian Airlines, formerly Ethiopian Air Lines (EAL) and often referred to as simply Ethiopian, is Ethiopia's flag carrier and is wholly owned by the country's government. EAL was founded on 21 December 1945 and commenced operations on 8 April 1946, expanding to international flights in 1951. The firm became a share company in 1965 and changed its name from Ethiopian Air Lines to Ethiopian Airlines. The airline has been a member of the International Air Transport Association since 1959 and of the African Airlines Association (AFRAA) since 1968. Ethiopian is a Star Alliance member, having joined in December 2011.

Ethiopian Airlines Flight 961 hijacking, water ditching of aircraft

Ethiopian Airlines Flight 961 was a scheduled flight serving the route Addis Ababa–Nairobi–Brazzaville–Lagos–Abidjan. On 23 November 1996, the aircraft serving the flight, a Boeing 767-200ER, was hijacked en route from Addis Ababa to Nairobi by three Ethiopians seeking asylum in Australia. The plane crash-landed in the Indian Ocean near Grande Comore, Comoros Islands, due to fuel exhaustion; 125 of the 175 passengers and crew on board, including the three hijackers, died. The crash was captured on video.

Comoros Sovereign archipelago island nation in the Indian Ocean

The Comoros, officially the Union of the Comoros, is an island country in the Indian Ocean located at the northern end of the Mozambique Channel off the eastern coast of Africa between northeastern Mozambique, the French region of Mayotte, and northwestern Madagascar. The capital and largest city in Comoros is Moroni. The religion of the majority of the population is Sunni Islam.

The Boeing 737 MAX 8 model first flew on 29 January 2016 and entered service in 2017, making it one of the newest aircraft in Boeing's commercial airliner offerings, and the newest generation of Boeing 737. [4] As of February 2019, 376 aircraft of this model have been produced and one other had crashed, Lion Air Flight 610 in Indonesia in October 2018. [5] [2] [6] [7] Following the accident, the Boeing 737 MAX series of aircraft was grounded by various airlines and government regulators worldwide.

Boeing Aerospace and defense manufacturer in the United States

The Boeing Company is an American multinational corporation that designs, manufactures, and sells airplanes, rotorcraft, rockets, satellites, telecommunications equipment, and missiles worldwide. The company also provides leasing and product support services. Boeing is among the largest global aerospace manufacturers; it is the fifth-largest defense contractor in the world based on 2017 revenue, and is the largest exporter in the United States by dollar value. Boeing stock is included in the Dow Jones Industrial Average. Boeing is incorporated in Delaware.

Boeing 737 Single aisle airliner family by Boeing

The Boeing 737 is an American short- to medium-range twinjet narrow-body airliner developed and manufactured by Boeing Commercial Airplanes. Originally developed as a shorter, lower-cost twin-engine airliner derived from the 707 and 727, the 737 has developed into a family of several passenger models with capacities from 85 to 215 passengers. The 737 is Boeing's only narrow-body airliner in production, with the 737 Next Generation, and the re-engined and updated 737 MAX variants.

Lion Air Flight 610 2018 aircraft crash in the Java Sea, Indonesia, killing 189

Lion Air Flight 610 was a scheduled domestic flight operated by the Indonesian airline Lion Air from Soekarno–Hatta International Airport in Jakarta to Depati Amir Airport in Pangkal Pinang. On 29 October 2018, the Boeing 737 MAX 8 operating the route crashed into the Java Sea 12 minutes after takeoff, killing all 189 passengers and crew.

Accident

Flight 302 was a scheduled international passenger flight from Addis Ababa to Nairobi. The aircraft took off from Addis Ababa at 08:38 local time (05:38 UTC) with 149 passengers and 8 crew on board. [5] One minute into the flight, the first officer, acting on the instructions of the captain, reported a "flight control" problem to the control tower. Two minutes into the flight, the plane's MCAS system activated, pitching the plane into a dive toward the ground. The pilots struggled to control it and managed to prevent the nose from diving further, but the plane continued to lose altitude. The MCAS then activated again, dropping the nose even further down. The pilots then flipped a pair of switches to disable the electrical trim tab system, which also disabled the MCAS software. However, in shutting off the electrical trim system, they also shut off their ability to trim the stabilizer into a neutral position with the electrical switch on the top of their control wheels. The only other possible way to move the stabilizer would be by cranking the wheel by hand, but because the stabilizer was located opposite to the elevator, strong aerodynamic forces were pushing on it. As the pilots had inadvertently left the engines on at full takeoff power, which caused the plane to accelerate at high speed, there was further pressure on the stabilizer. The pilots' attempts to manually crank the stabilizer back into position failed. Three minutes into the flight, with the aircraft continuing to lose altitude and accelerating beyond its safety limits, the captain instructed the first officer to request permission from air traffic control to return to the airport. Permission was granted, and the air traffic controllers diverted other approaching flights. Following instructions from air traffic control, they turned the aircraft to the east, and it rolled to the right. The right wing came to point down as the turn steepened. At 8:43, having struggled to keep the plane's nose from diving further by manually pulling the control wheel, the captain asked the first officer to help him, and turned the electrical trim tab system back on in the hope that it would allow him to put the stabilizer back into neutral trim. However, in turning the trim system back on, he also reactivated the MCAS system, which pushed the nose further down. The captain and first officer attempted to raise the nose by manually pulling their control wheels, but the aircraft continued to plunge toward the ground. [8] [9]

Nairobi Capital city in Nairobi County, Kenya

Nairobi is the capital and the largest city of Kenya. The name comes from the Maasai phrase Enkare Nairobi, which translates to "cool water", a reference to the Nairobi River which flows through the city. The city proper had a population of 3,138,369 in the 2009 census, while the metropolitan area has a population of 6,547,547. The city is popularly referred to as the Green City in the Sun.

East Africa Time time zone used in eastern Africa

East Africa Time, or EAT, is a time zone used in eastern Africa. The time zone is three hours ahead of UTC (UTC+03:00), which is the same as Moscow Time, Arabia Standard Time, Further-eastern European Time and Eastern European Summer Time.

Coordinated Universal Time Primary time standard by which the world regulates clocks and time

Coordinated Universal Time is the primary time standard by which the world regulates clocks and time. It is within about 1 second of mean solar time at 0° longitude, and is not adjusted for daylight saving time. In some countries where English is spoken, the term Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) is often used as a synonym for UTC and predates UTC by nearly 300 years.

The aircraft disappeared from radar screens and crashed at almost 08:44, six minutes after takeoff. [10] [2] [11] [12] Flight tracking data showed that the aircraft's altitude and rate of climb and descent were fluctuating. [13] Several witnesses stated the plane trailed "white smoke" and made strange noises before crashing. [14] The aircraft impacted the ground at nearly 700 mph. [8] There were no survivors. [5]

It crashed in the woreda (district) of Gimbichu, Oromia Region, [15] in a farm field near the town of Bishoftu, 62 kilometres (39 mi) southeast of Bole International Airport. [16] The impact created a crater about 90 feet wide and 120 feet long, and wreckage was driven up to 30 feet deep into the soil. Wreckage was strewn around the field along with personal effects and body parts. [17] [8] [18]

Gimbichu is one of the woredas in the Oromia Region of Ethiopia. Part of the Misraq Shewa Zone, Gimbichu is bordered on the south by Lome, on the southwest by Ada'a Chukala, on the northwest by the Amhara Region, and on the east by the Afar Region. The administrative center is Chefe Donsa.

Oromia Region Regional State in Ethiopia

Oromia is one of the nine ethnically based regional states of Ethiopia, the homeland of the Oromo. It is bordered by the Somali Region to the east; the Amhara Region, the Afar Region and the Benishangul-Gumuz Region to the north; South Sudan, Gambela Region, and Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples' Region to the west; and Kenya to the south. The 2011 census reported the population of Oromia Region as 35,000,000; this makes it the largest regional state in population.

Bishoftu Town in Oromia, Ethiopia

Bishoftu is a town and separate woreda of Ethiopia, lying south east of Addis Ababa. It was formerly known as Debre Zeyit however since the late 1990s it has been officially known by the Oromo name, Bishoftu, which was its name until 1955. The town is located in the East Shewa Zone of the Oromia Region, and has an elevation of 1,920 metres (6,300 ft).

Emergency response

Shortly after the crash, police and a firefighting crew from a nearby Ethiopian Air Force base arrived and extinguished the fires caused by the crash. [19] Police cordoned off the site, and Ethiopian Red Cross personnel and air crash investigators moved in. Together with local villagers, they sifted through the wreckage, recovering pieces of the aircraft, personal effects, and human remains. Trucks and excavators were brought in to assist in clearing the crash site. Human remains found were bagged and taken to Bole International Airport for storage in refrigeration units typically used to store roses destined for export before being taken to St. Paul's Hospital in Addis Ababa for storage pending identification. [17] [20] Personnel from Interpol and Blake Emergency Services, a private British disaster response firm contracted by the Ethiopian government, arrived to gather human tissue for DNA testing, and an Israel Police forensics team also arrived to assist in identifying the remains of the two Israeli victims of the crash. [21] [22] The Chinese railway construction firm CRSG and later joined by another construction firm, CCCC, brought in all large scale equipment including excavators and trucks. They recovered both black boxes on the 11th of March, with the first being found at 9:00AM and the second flight recorder found at 13:00PM respectively. [lower-alpha 1] [23] [24] The black boxes were given to Ethiopian Airlines and were sent to Paris for inspection by the BEA, the French aviation accident investigation agency. [25]

Aircraft

The aircraft was a Boeing 737 MAX 8, registered ET-AVJ (construction number 62450, manufacturer's serial number 7243), powered by two CFM International LEAP engines. [11] The aircraft was manufactured in October 2018 and delivered on 15 November 2018, making it around four months old at the time of the accident. [26] [27]

Passengers and crew

The airline stated that the flight’s 149 passengers had 35 different nationalities. [28] Crash victim positive identification was announced September 13, 2019. Nearly a hundred disaster victim identification (DVI) experts from 14 countries supported the Interpol Incident Response Team (IRT) mission. [29]

Passengers by nationality [30]
NationalityDeaths
Kenya32
Canada18
Ethiopia9
China8 [lower-alpha 2]
Italy8
United States8
France7
United Kingdom7
Egypt6
Germany5
India4
Slovakia4
Austria3
Russia3
Sweden3
Israel2
Morocco2
Poland2
Spain2
Belgium1
Djibouti1
Indonesia1
Ireland1
Mozambique1
Nepal1
Nigeria1
Norway1
Rwanda1
Saudi Arabia1
Serbia1
Somalia1
Sudan1
Togo1
Uganda1
Yemen1
Total149

All passengers and crew on board, 157 in total, were killed in the accident. [2] Many of the passengers were travelling to Nairobi to attend the fourth session of the United Nations Environment Assembly. [32] A total of 22 people affiliated with the United Nations (UN) were killed, including seven World Food Programme staff, along with staff of the United Nations office in Nairobi, the International Telecommunications Union, and the office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. [33] [34] The Deputy Director of Communications for UNESCO, a retired Nigerian diplomat and senior UN official who was working on behalf of UNITAR, and a staff member of the Sudan office of the International Organization for Migration were also among the dead. [35] [36] The airline stated that one passenger had a United Nations laissez-passer. [28] Both Addis Ababa and Nairobi have offices of UN agencies, and Addis Ababa has the head office of the African Union. [37] The Addis Ababa-Nairobi route is also popular with tourists and business people. An employee of the Norwegian Red Cross, a British intern with the Norwegian Refugee Council, an environmental agent for the Association of Arctic Expedition Cruise Operators, four Catholic Relief Services staff, and a senior Ugandan police official on assignment with the African Union peacekeeping force in Somalia were also killed. [38] [39]

Notable victims on-board included the Italian archaeologist and Councillor for Cultural Heritage of Sicily, Sebastiano Tusa, and Nigerian-Canadian academic Pius Adesanmi. [40] [41] Slovak politician Anton Hrnko lost his wife and two children in the crash. [2] Other notable victims included Christine Alalo, a Ugandan police commissioner and peacekeeper serving with the African Union Mission in Somalia; [42]

The captain of the plane was Yared Getachew, 29, who had been flying with the airline for almost nine years [43] and had logged a total of 8,122 flight hours, including 1,417 hours on the Boeing 737. [lower-alpha 3] He had been a Boeing 737-800 captain since November 2017, and Boeing 737 MAX since July 2018. [10] At the time of the accident, he was the youngest captain at the airline. [44] The first officer, Ahmed Nur Mohammod Nur, 25, was a recent graduate from the airline's academy with 361 flight hours logged, including 207 hours on the Boeing 737. [lower-alpha 4] [44] [10]

Responses

Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed offered his condolences to the families of the victims. [5] Ethiopian Airlines CEO Tewolde Gebremariam visited the accident site, confirmed that there were no survivors and expressed sympathy and condolences. [45] Boeing issued a statement of condolence. [46]

The Ethiopian parliament declared 11 March as a day of national mourning. [47] During the opening of the fourth United Nations Environment Assembly in Nairobi, a minute of silence was observed in sympathy for the victims. [48] President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria, in his condolence message on behalf of the government and the people of Nigeria, extended his sincere condolences to Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed of Ethiopia, the people of Ethiopia, Kenya, Canada, China and all other nations who lost citizens in the crash. [49]

On 11 March, the FAA commented that the Boeing 737 Max 8 model was airworthy. However, due to concerns on the operation of the aircraft, the FAA ordered Boeing to implement design changes, effective by April. [50] It stated that Boeing "plans to update training requirements and flight crew manuals in response to the design change" to the aircraft's Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS). The changes will also include enhancements to the activation of the MCAS and the angle of attack signal. [51] Boeing stated that the upgrade was developed in response to the Lion Air crash but did not link it to the Ethiopian Airlines crash. [52]

On 19 March, the U.S. Secretary of Transportation, Elaine L. Chao, sent a memo to the U.S. Inspector General asking him to "proceed with an audit to compile an objective and detailed factual history of the activities that resulted in the certification of the Boeing 737-MAX 8 aircraft." [53]

Flight International commented that the accident would likely increase unease about the Boeing 737 MAX felt in the aftermath of the Lion Air Flight 610 accident in October 2018, which similarly occurred shortly after take-off and killed everyone aboard. [54] Boeing shares dropped 11% over the weekend, [55] and as of 23 March Boeing has lost more than $40 billion in market value since the crash, dropping some 14%. [56]

Groundings

As a result of the accident and the Lion Air Flight 610 crash, which occurred five months prior to the Ethiopian crash, most airlines and countries around the world began grounding the Boeing 737 MAX 8 (as well as the other MAX variants) due to safety concerns. Ethiopian Airlines grounded their aircraft after the crash, followed by other operators of the 737 MAX. [50] [57] [58] [59] [60] [61] [62] [63] Aviation authorities also started grounding all MAX aircraft under their jurisdiction, including transiting flights, initially by the Civil Aviation Administration of China on 11 March 2019. [64] Between 11 and 13 March the majority of aviation authorities around the world grounded the aircraft. [64] [65] [66] [67] [68] [69] [70] [71] [72] [73] [74] [75] [76] Initially the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) declined to ground 737 MAX aircraft under its jurisdiction, [77] [78] but acted on 13 March to issue an emergency grounding order, citing new evidence from the crash investigations. [79] [80] [81] [82]

Investigation

The Ethiopian Civil Aviation Authority (ECAA), the agency responsible for investigating civil aviation accidents in Ethiopia, has been investigating. The aircraft manufacturer, Boeing, stated that it is prepared to work with the United States National Transportation Safety Board and assist Ethiopian Airlines. [46] The United States Federal Aviation Administration will also assist in the investigation. [83]

Both the cockpit voice recorder and the flight data recorder were recovered from the crash site on 11 March. [84] The French aviation accident investigation agency BEA announced that it would analyze the flight recorders from the flight. [85] BEA received the flight recorders on 14 March. [86] On 17 March, the Ethiopia’s transport minister Dagmawit Moges announced that "the black box has been found in a good condition that enabled us to extract almost all the data inside" and that the preliminary data retrieved from the flight data recorder show a clear similarity with those of Lion Air Flight 610 which crashed off Indonesia. [87]

On 13 March 2019, the FAA announced that new evidence found on the crash site and satellite data on Flight 302 suggested that the aircraft might have suffered from the same problem which the aircraft operating Lion Air Flight 610 had suffered from. Investigators discovered the jackscrew that controlled the pitch angle of the horizontal stabilizer of Flight 302, was in the full "nose down" position. The finding suggested that, at the time of the crash, Flight 302 was configured to dive, similar to Lion Air Flight 610. [88] Due to this finding, some experts in Indonesia suggested that the Indonesian National Transportation Safety Committee (NTSC) should cooperate with Flight 302's investigation team. [89] Later on the evening, the NTSC offered assistance to Flight 302's investigation team, stating that the committee and the Indonesian Transportation Ministry would send investigators and representatives from the government to assist with the investigation of the crash. [90]

Preliminary report

On 4 April 2019 the ECAA released the preliminary report on the crash. [10] The preliminary report does not specifically mention MCAS but rather states "approximately five seconds after the end of the ANU (aircraft nose up) stabilizer motion, a third instance of AND (aircraft nose down) automatic trim command occurred without any corresponding motion of the stabilizer, which is consistent with the stabilizer trim cutout switches being in the ‘’cutout’’ position". [10]

Approximately one minute into the flight 238 kt (274 miles per hour) airspeed was selected. About 12 seconds later the autopilot disengaged. The preliminary report asserts that the thrust remained at takeoff setting (94% N1) and the throttles did not move for the entire flight. [10] [91] In the next 30 seconds the stabilizer trim moved 4.2 degrees nose down, from 4.6 to 0.4 units. [92] In the next 10 seconds the trim moved back up to 2.3 units as a result of pilot input and the pilots agreed on and executed the stabilizer trim cut-out procedure, cutting power to the trim motor operated by MCAS. [10]

Reactions to the investigation

Statements from parties

Ethiopian Airlines said MCAS was "to the best of our knowledge" active when the aircraft crashed. [93] [94] According to Ethiopian transport minister Dagmawit Moges, the crew "performed all the procedures repeatedly provided by the manufacturer but was not able to control the aircraft". [95] [96] [97] Bjorn Fehrm from Leeham News stated the preliminary report confirms "the Flight Crew followed the procedures prescribed by FAA and Boeing in Airworthiness Directive 2018-23-51", [92] released shortly after the Lion Air crash.

Boeing's CEO Dennis Muilenburg said on 29 April that if "you go through the checklist...it calls out actions that would be taken around power management and pitch management of the airplane. It also refers to the cutout switches, that after an activation that was not pilot-induced, that you would hit the cutout switches. And, in some cases, those procedures were not completely followed". [98] [99] [100]

A data spike in the flight data [10] led to speculations about a bird or other debris hitting the plane as it was taking off, shearing away the airflow sensor. [101] These speculations were dismissed by Ethiopian Airlines, and Chief investigator Amdye Ayalew Fanta stated there was no indication of such damage. [101] [102] [103] [104]

On 25 April The Aviation Herald submitted 25 questions that has arisen in the aftermath of the accident to the FAA's Flight Standardization Board (FSB) regarding their draft for certification of the Boeing 737 MAX aircraft. [1] Earlier it stated that a copy of the version of section 2.6 of the Flight Operations Manual, "Operational Irregularities", in use by Ethiopian Airlines at the time of the crash was dated 1 November 2017 and did not include material from the Operator's Bulletin issued by Boeing on 6 November 2018. [1]

Expert analysis

Based on the preliminary report The Aviation Herald comes to the conclusion: "Neither of the three crews" (JT-43, JT-610, ET-302) "would have been forced to react under time pressure in order to prevent a crash, [...] without the technical malfunctions [of the angle of attack sensors] and the nose down trim inputs." [1]

According to The Air Current aviation journal and The Seattle Times the preliminary report shows the pilots initially followed the procedure to disable runaway trim, but the recovery effort did not succeed. [105] [106] Pilots have demonstrated in simulator that the trim wheels cannot be moved in severe mis-trim conditions combined with a high airspeed. [107] [108] As the pilots on Flight 302 pulled on the yoke to raise the nose, the aerodynamic forces on the tail’s elevator would create an opposing force on the stabilizer trim jackscrew that would prevent the pilots from moving the trim wheel by hand. [101] [106] [109]

The resolution for this jammed trim issue is not part of Boeing's current 737 manual according to The Air Current. [105] The Seattle Times reports pilots on the 737-200 were trained for this failure, but later models got so reliable, this procedure was no longer necessary. [106] [105]

Experts theorize that the difficulty to trim made it necessary for the flight crew to release the cutout, and try to use electronic trim in an effort to correct the out-of-trim configuration. [92] [110] According to Bjorn Fehrm (Leeham News) and Peter Lemme at this time the airplane was flying "at 375kts and MCAS was never designed to trim at these Speed/Altitude combinations". [92] [110]

Pilot analysis

John Cox, previously a 737 pilot and pilots' union safety representative, and Chesley Sullenberger, who successfully ditched US Airways Flight 1549 in the Hudson River, both did Flight Simulator replications of Flight 302. Cox described the rapid onset of unforeseen events as a "...breeding ground for confusion and task saturation." Sullenberger commented that "Even knowing what was going to happen, I could see how crews would have run out of time and altitude before they could have solved the problems." [111] While defending the pilots' actions, Sullenberger was also highly critical of allowing someone with only 200 hours of flight experience to be first officer. [112]

See also

Notes

  1. East Africa Time
  2. Including: 1 Hong Kong resident [31]
  3. Yared had 1,417 hours on the Boeing 737 regardless of variant, however, he only had 103 hours on the Boeing 737 MAX. [10]
  4. Ahmed had 207 hours on the Boeing 737 regardless of variant, however, he only had 56 hours on the Boeing 737 MAX. [10]

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Since its inception Southwest Airlines has almost exclusively operated Boeing 737 aircraft. Southwest is the world's largest operator of the Boeing 737, and was the launch customer of the 737-300, 737-500, 737-700 and 737 max 8.

Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 aviation accident

Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 was a Boeing 737-700 that experienced an uncontained engine failure after departing from New York–LaGuardia Airport en route to Dallas Love Field on April 17, 2018. Debris from the failed engine damaged the fuselage, causing rapid depressurization of the aircraft after damaging a cabin window. The crew conducted an emergency descent and diverted to Philadelphia International Airport. One passenger was partially ejected from the aircraft and later died. Eight other passengers received minor injuries. The aircraft was substantially damaged. It was the first fatal airline accident involving a U.S. passenger carrier since the crash of Colgan Air Flight 3407 in February 2009, and the first accident involving Southwest Airlines that resulted in the death of a passenger.

Boeing 737 MAX groundings Boeing 737 MAX groundings

In March 2019, aviation regulators and airlines around the world grounded all Boeing 737 MAX passenger airliners after two MAX 8 aircraft crashed, killing the 346 people aboard. The accidents befell Lion Air Flight 610 on October 29, 2018 and Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 on March 10, 2019. Ethiopian Airlines acted first, grounding its MAX fleet effective the day of the accident. On March 11, Chinese authorities ordered the first regulatory grounding, and most other agencies and airlines banned the airplane over the next two days. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) initially reaffirmed the airplane's airworthiness on March 11, but grounded it on March 13. The groundings affected 387 MAX aircraft delivered to 59 airlines.

Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System Automated flight control feature developed by Boeing, to compensate for the size of new, more fuel-efficient engines having outgrown certain plane designs, most notably the 737

The Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS) is a feature of a Boeing 737 MAX flight control system that attempts to mimic pitching behavior similar to the Boeing 737 NG, especially in low-speed and high angle of attack (AoA) flight. It adjusts horizontal stabilizer trim to bring the aircraft nose down when it detects that the aircraft is in imminent danger of entering an aerodynamic stall, based on input from airspeed, altitude and angle of attack sensors.

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Analysis of preliminary report: timeline and human factor

Difficulty to trim

Summary of the 737 Max crashes