Print 22 comment(s) - last by sorry dog.. on Dec 16 at 1:22 PM

The safety board hasn’t concluded what caused the crash

A recent hearing regarding the Asiana Airlines crash in San Francisco last July revealed that the pilot was unfamiliar with the plane's systems and wasn't prepared to handle it manually.
According to a new report from Bloomberg, a U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) hearing yesterday showed that the Asiana Airlines pilot from the July 6 crash disabled a speed-control system before the plane crashed at San Francisco International Airport (SFO). 
The pilot -- Lee Kang Kuk -- who was being trained on the Boeing 777-200ER wide-body, entered certain parameters into the flight-management and auto-throttle systems that day, leading the plane to believe he wanted to accelerate and climb. He then throttled back to counter the plane’s increase in thrust so that the plane’s descent could resume.
However, the throttles stayed in the lowest setting due to the way the auto-throttle had been set, and because he had shut off the autopilot.
Once the plane descended below 50 feet, the plane’s control column began shaking as a warning to pilots that they were losing lift. A series of chimes rang 11 seconds before impact, which indicate that the plane had reached dangerously low speed. A transcript showed that Lee Jung Min (an instructor pilot monitoring the captain as part of his training) gave the command to abort the landing and climb 8.5 seconds after the initial speed warning.

As it turns out, the pilots increased the power too late to avoid the crash.

Lee Kang Kuk said the experience was "very stressful" and "very difficult," and that he wasn’t used to landing without an instrument-landing system leading him to the runway. According to Lee, he thought the auto-throttle would have come out of the idle position to prevent the airplane from going below the minimum speed. 

The crash killed three teenage girls from China and over 200 passengers were taken to hospitals. There were 291 passengers, 12 flight attendants and four pilots. 

“Asiana is committed to taking necessary steps to ensure such an accident never happens again,” said Asiana Airlines in a statement.

The safety board hasn’t concluded what caused the crash.

However, a recent study commissioned by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) shows that pilots depend on automation much more than they should, and many don't know what to do when they must manually take over. 
"They [pilots] are accustomed to watching things happen…instead of being proactive," said the study.
The study was comprised of an international panel of air-safety experts comprising of industry, labor, academic and government officials.

Source: Bloomberg

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RE: should not have been flying
By MozeeToby on 12/12/2013 2:41:57 PM , Rating: 0
An interesting thing to note, there is a significant difference in the path for airline pilots in S. Koreans vs most of the rest of the world.

In most places, someone is interested in piloting from a young age and will have several hundred hours flying experience in small, private planes before they ever apply to be an airline pilot. It's that unofficial experience which drills home the "basic skills" like flying a visual approach, manually controlling throttles, etc.

In S. Korea, there are no private pilot licenses. There's too much concern that some idiot will either try to defect or simply not no how to navigate and wander over the DMZ and spark of a second round of the Korean War. That means that prospective airline pilots apply with either zero flying experience or only military (which has a very, very different culture).

Yes, the airline training programs are supposed to teach them the basics. But they're not going to get the hundreds of visual approach landings needed to drill it home, there simply isn't time to drill it until it becomes second nature. Not to mention the costs involved in cycling training aircraft dozens of times before even getting to the much more common scenario of using the ILS.

RE: should not have been flying
By Chaser on 12/12/2013 10:57:39 PM , Rating: 2
In S. Korea, there are no private pilot licenses. There's too much concern that some idiot will either try to defect

South Koreans, don't do defections. You might want to have your head checked for reverse polar syndrome.

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