Ethiopian Airlines pilots followed rules

The crew of the Ethiopian Airlines jet that crashed last month, killing all 157 people aboard, performed all the procedures recommended by the manufacturer Boeing but could not control the jet, according to the preliminary report of the aircraft’s data.

The Boeing 737 Max 8 jet experienced “nose dive conditions,” according to the investigation announced Thursday by Ethiopia’s Minister of Transport Dagmawit Moges. 

“The crew performed all the procedures repeatedly (that were) provided by the manufacturer but were not able to control the aircraft,” Ms Dagmawit said at the news conference in the capital Addis Ababa, the BBC reported.

The report recommends that the flight control system should be reviewed by Boeing and that aviation authorities should verify the system before the aircraft is released to operation.

Boeing declined to comment pending its review of the preliminary report.

The plane crashed on March 10 shortly after takeoff from Addis Ababa. It was the second crash of a 737 Max within five months, following a Lion Air crash in Indonesia in October that killed all 189 people aboard.

Moges has previously said that preliminary data indicated “clear similarities” between both crashes.

In a statement Thursday, Ethiopian Airlines said the preliminary report “clearly showed” that the pilots of the flight “followed the Boeing recommended and FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) approved emergency procedures to handle the most difficult emergency situation created on the airplane.”

“Despite their hard work and full compliance with the emergency procedures, it was very unfortunate that they could not recover the airplane from the persistence of nose diving. As the investigation continues with more detailed analysis, as usual we will continue with our full cooperation with the investigation team,” the airline’s statement said. 

Following the Ethiopian disaster, the 737 Max jets have been grounded worldwide pending a software fix that Boeing is rolling out. The software fix must still receive approval from the FAA and other regulators.

More: Bird hit on sensor could have doomed Ethiopian Airlines’ Boeing 737 Max jet, report says

More: Investigators believe Boeing anti-stall system was activated in Ethiopian crash: Report

Contributing: The Associated Press

 

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