Members of the National Transportation Safety Committee lift a box containing the flight data recorder from a crashed Lion Air jet onboard a rescue ship anchored in the waters of Tanjung Karawang, Indonesia.(AP)
Members of the National Transportation Safety Committee lift a box containing the flight data recorder from a crashed Lion Air jet onboard a rescue ship anchored in the waters of Tanjung Karawang, Indonesia.(AP)

Lion Air pilots struggled to control plane that crashed in Indonesia

The MAX aircraft, the latest version of Boeing’s popular 737 jetliner, includes an automated system that pushes the nose down if a sensor detects that the nose is pointed so high that the plane could go into an aerodynamic stall.
By Associated Press | Indonesia
UPDATED ON NOV 28, 2018 02:41 PM IST

Lion Air pilots struggled to maintain control of a Boeing jet as its automatic safety system repeatedly pushed the plane’s nose down, according to a draft of a preliminary report by Indonesian authorities investigating last month’s deadly crash.

The investigators are focusing on whether faulty information from sensors led the plane’s system to force the nose down. The new Boeing 737 MAX 8 plunged into the Java Sea on October 29, killing all 189 people on board.

The New York Times reported that information from the Lion Air jet’s flight data recorder was included in a briefing for the Indonesian Parliament and reported by Indonesian media. Peter Lemme, an expert in aviation and satellite communications and a former Boeing engineer, wrote an analysis of the data on his blog. The AP was unable to independently verify the authenticity of the report posted online.

Indonesian authorities are expected to issue the report Wednesday, although it is unclear whether they will offer a probable cause for the crash.

The MAX aircraft, the latest version of Boeing’s popular 737 jetliner, includes an automated system that pushes the nose down if a sensor detects that the nose is pointed so high that the plane could go into an aerodynamic stall.

Lemme described “a deadly game of tag” in which the plane pointed down, the pilots countered by manually aiming the nose higher, only for the sequence to repeat about five seconds later. That happened 26 times, but pilots failed to recognize what was happening and follow the known procedure for countering incorrect activation of the automated safety system, Lemme told The Associated Press.

Lemme said he was also troubled that there weren’t easy checks to see if sensor information was correct, that the crew of the fatal flight apparently wasn’t warned that similar problems had occurred on previous flights, and that the Lion Air jet wasn’t fixed after those flights.

“Had they fixed the airplane, we would not have had the accident,” he said. “Every accident is a combination of events, so there is disappointment all around here,” he said.

Boeing did not immediately respond to two emails and a phone call requesting comment. The company said last week that it remains confident in the safety of the 737 MAX and had given airlines around the world two updates to “re-emphasize existing procedures for these situations.”

Pilots at American Airlines and Southwest Airlines complained this month that they had not been given all information about the new system on the MAX. More than 200 MAX jets have been delivered to airlines around the world.

The Indonesian investigation is continuing with help from U.S. regulators and Boeing. Searchers have not found the plane’s cockpit voice recorder, which would provide more information about the pilots’ actions

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
app
Close
South Korean President Moon Jae-in, had offered to be a mediator between Pyongyang and Washington.(Reuters)
South Korean President Moon Jae-in, had offered to be a mediator between Pyongyang and Washington.(Reuters)

South Korea's Moon urges Biden admin to follow up on Kim, Trump summit

Reuters, Seoul
PUBLISHED ON JAN 18, 2021 10:21 AM IST
Joe Biden takes office amid a prolonged stalemate in negotiations aimed at dismantling North Korea's nuclear programme.
Close
Members of police K-9 squad lead a sniffer dog during a search for victims at a hospital building collapsed in Friday's earthquake in Mamuju, West Sulawesi, Indonesia, Sunday, Jan. 17, 2021. (AP Photo/Yusuf Wahil)(AP)
Members of police K-9 squad lead a sniffer dog during a search for victims at a hospital building collapsed in Friday's earthquake in Mamuju, West Sulawesi, Indonesia, Sunday, Jan. 17, 2021. (AP Photo/Yusuf Wahil)(AP)

Indonesia quake death toll at 81 as country battles series of disasters

Reuters
PUBLISHED ON JAN 18, 2021 10:15 AM IST
There was a plane crash on January 9 that killed 62 people as well as a deadly landslide in Java and the eruption of the Merapi and Semeru volcanoes.
Close
GDP grew 2.3% in 2020, the data showed, making China the only major economy in the world to avoid a contraction last year.(AP file photo)
GDP grew 2.3% in 2020, the data showed, making China the only major economy in the world to avoid a contraction last year.(AP file photo)

China's economy picks up speed in Q4, ends 2020 in solid shape after Covid shock

Reuters, Beijing
PUBLISHED ON JAN 18, 2021 10:12 AM IST
The world's second-largest economy has surprised many with the speed of its recovery from the coronavirus jolt.
Close
FILE PHOTO: Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison arrives at Haneda airport in Tokyo, Japan, November 17, 2020. REUTERS/Issei Kato/File Photo/File Photo(REUTERS)
FILE PHOTO: Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison arrives at Haneda airport in Tokyo, Japan, November 17, 2020. REUTERS/Issei Kato/File Photo/File Photo(REUTERS)

Many Australians urge PM Morrison to rebuke MP for Covid disinformation

ANI, Canberra
PUBLISHED ON JAN 18, 2021 10:07 AM IST
It comes after government MP Craig Kelly shared posts on social media earlier in January likening mask mandates for children to child abuse.
Close
US President Donald Trump.(REUTERS)
US President Donald Trump.(REUTERS)

Donald Trump, so far, not planning to pardon himself: Reports

Reuters
UPDATED ON JAN 18, 2021 09:24 AM IST
Trump is preparing an expansive list of more than 100 pardons and commutations for release before he demits office on January 19.
Close
FILE PHOTO: U.S. President-elect Joe Biden delivers remarks as Vice President-elect Kamala Harris looks on during a televised speech on the current economic and health crises at The Queen Theatre in Wilmington, Delaware, U.S., January 14, 2021. REUTERS/Tom Brenner/File photo(REUTERS)
FILE PHOTO: U.S. President-elect Joe Biden delivers remarks as Vice President-elect Kamala Harris looks on during a televised speech on the current economic and health crises at The Queen Theatre in Wilmington, Delaware, U.S., January 14, 2021. REUTERS/Tom Brenner/File photo(REUTERS)

Biden expected to pick FTC member Chopra to head consumer financial regulator

Reuters
UPDATED ON JAN 18, 2021 09:16 AM IST
Rohit Chopra's expected nomination suggests that Biden intends to fire current Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) director Kathy Kraninger, a Donald Trump appointee whose term officially ends in 2023.
Close
National Guard troops receive guns and ammunition outside the US Capitol building.(REUTERS)
National Guard troops receive guns and ammunition outside the US Capitol building.(REUTERS)

FBI vetting Guard troops in DC amid fears of insider attack

AP
PUBLISHED ON JAN 18, 2021 09:08 AM IST
The massive undertaking reflects the extraordinary security concerns that have gripped Washington following the deadly Jan. 6 insurrection at the US Capitol by pro-Trump rioters.
Close
Members of the National Guard walk past the dome of the Capitol Building on Capitol Hill in Washington.(AP)
Members of the National Guard walk past the dome of the Capitol Building on Capitol Hill in Washington.(AP)

Biden swearing-in: Heavily fortified statehouses around US see small protests

PTI
PUBLISHED ON JAN 18, 2021 09:07 AM IST
The FBI has warned of the potential for armed protests in Washington and at all 50 state capitol buildings ahead of President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration on Wednesday.
Close
A sign left by an anti-protestor is shown near the Nevada State Legislature.(AFP)
A sign left by an anti-protestor is shown near the Nevada State Legislature.(AFP)

Small numbers of protesters gather at fortified US statehouses

PTI
UPDATED ON JAN 18, 2021 09:04 AM IST
Security was stepped up in recent days after the FBI warned of the potential for armed protests in Washington and at all 50 state capitol buildings ahead of President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration on Wednesday.
Close
A worker in protective suit serves customers at a checkout counter of a supermarket following the outbreak of the novel coronavirus in Wuhan, (REUTERS)
A worker in protective suit serves customers at a checkout counter of a supermarket following the outbreak of the novel coronavirus in Wuhan, (REUTERS)

WHO team probes Covid-19 origin; says 'world may never find patient zero'

AFP
UPDATED ON JAN 18, 2021 07:34 AM IST
The committee also called on the WHO to come up with a standardised system for naming new variants to keep them geographically and politically neutral, in a bid to avoid stigmatisation.
Close
The United States put Huawei on a Commerce Department "entity list" in May 2019, restricting suppliers from selling US goods and technology to the company.(REUTERS)
The United States put Huawei on a Commerce Department "entity list" in May 2019, restricting suppliers from selling US goods and technology to the company.(REUTERS)

In last blow to China, Trump admin halts Huawei suppliers

Reuters
PUBLISHED ON JAN 18, 2021 06:04 AM IST
The action - likely the last against Huawei Technologies under Republican President Donald Trump - is the latest in a long-running effort to weaken the world's largest telecommunications equipment maker, which it says is a threat to US national security and foreign policy interests.
Close
The total number of exterminated birds is expected to reach six million once the culling is over. Image used for representational purpose only. (HT file photo)
The total number of exterminated birds is expected to reach six million once the culling is over. Image used for representational purpose only. (HT file photo)

Bird flu outbreak: Japan culled record 5.8 million chickens since Nov 2020

ANI
PUBLISHED ON JAN 18, 2021 05:47 AM IST
The previous record dates back to the 2005-2006 season when 5.7 million chickens were culled because of the disease.
Close
A Honduran migrant is tended to by Guatemalan soldiers after they clashed with them in a bid to reach the US border in Vado Hondo, Guatemala,(AP)
A Honduran migrant is tended to by Guatemalan soldiers after they clashed with them in a bid to reach the US border in Vado Hondo, Guatemala,(AP)

Guatemalan forces clash with migrant caravan, Biden team seeks to halt exodus

Reuters
UPDATED ON JAN 18, 2021 05:44 AM IST
Between 7,000 and 8,000 migrants, including families with young children, have entered Guatemala since Friday, authorities say, fleeing poverty and violence in a region hammered by the coronavirus pandemic and back-to-back hurricanes in November.
Close
Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte.(REUTERS)
Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte.(REUTERS)

Fragile Italian government faces do-or-die votes in parliament

Reuters
PUBLISHED ON JAN 18, 2021 05:40 AM IST
Giuseppe Conte will address the lower house on Monday and the upper house, the Senate, on Tuesday about the future of his government after a junior partner quit the cabinet in a row over his handling of the twin coronavirus and economic crises.
Close
Members of the Washington National Guard stand watch outside the Washington State Capitol in anticipation of potential armed protests in Olympia, US. (REUTERS)
Members of the Washington National Guard stand watch outside the Washington State Capitol in anticipation of potential armed protests in Olympia, US. (REUTERS)

Anxious US sees subdued weekend after girding for unrest

Bloomberg
UPDATED ON JAN 18, 2021 07:43 AM IST
Officers from the federal Bureau of Prisons patrolled the sidewalks along Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, which connects the White House and Capitol Hill, the scene of chaos on Jan. 6.
Close
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP