Another Airbus aircraft has crashed, this time a Yemeni airliner crashed in the Indian Ocean. The Yemenia Airbus 310 flight IY626 was flying from the Yemeni capital Sanaa – however the flight originated in France.
The only survivor (this far) was a five-year-old child.
Apparently EU officials did question Yemenia’s safety record and proposed a world blacklist of those carriers which they deemed to be unsafe. It is usually not the aircraft which is the problem but more often than not, poor maintenance or poor (substitute) parts which have been found in many crashes, which can contribute towards air disasters. These are 2 very different aircraft and 2 companies with very different records – so you cannot really draw anything into them having the same manufacturer. There are also rumours that France banned this airline in 2007.
The Airbus that crashed on June 1st and this Airbus both crashed at similar Longitudes, both flying at night, both around the equator, and were both Airbus flying in windy weather – but apart from that there are no details about whether or not a mayday message was issued. One official did say thatthe control tower had received notification the plane was on vectors for approach, a few miles out, and then lost contact with it.
After the Air France Airbus crash on June 1, NTSB accident investigators have been probing two recent failures of airspeed and altitude sensors and pitot tubes aboard Airbus A330s. The failures occurred on flights between the United States and Brazil in May and between Hong Kong and Japan in June. Both aircraft landed safely and there were no injuries or damage, however it is an unusual occurrance.
This latest crash comes near the point where a hijacked Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 767 crashed near a beach on the Comoros islands in 1996, killing 125 of 175 passengers and crew. Many of those who died had inflated their life jackets inside the aircraft – the crash was filmed on camera, as holiday makers lay enjoying the sun.
There has been some speculation (including myself from day 1) that the rudder was a key element to the investigation of the air crash of Flight AF447. The tail was found last week and investigators are now reviewing whether or not the Airbus rudder was an issue. They are focusing on the part of the rudder which controls how much the rudder can move. Normally, a limiter prevents the rudder from swinging or moving too far – at high speeds an incorrectly positioned rudder could sheer off. There has been some speculation in the media that this Airbus had some issues regarding the rudder – I find this hard to believe, as any aircraft snag list which highlighted a rudder problem, you can be guaranteed that Air France would have brought the aircraft in for immediate repair.
Part of the Airbus Rudder / Vertical Stabiliser of Flight AF447
Technicians will be able to review the metal structure, looking for corrosion or metal sheer and may be able to deduce if the rudder failed on its own or if air speed was a factor. There are many large bolts in the area of the vertical stabiliser and perhaps one of these failed – however if you look at the amount of the tail fin was recovered it actually is only the fin part and does not come near the area where the structure is housed and secured.
Other air crashes which had rudder problems include on famous case in Japan where a JAL Boeing 747SR lost part of its rudder and crashed into a mountain. Other cases include SilkAir Flight 185, American Airlines Flight 587.
There are now many vessels, including some from USA and France covering hundreds of square kilometers every day listening for the pingers on the black boxes and flight data recorders which will stop working in about 2 weeks.
The next 2 weeks will be vital in the search for clues to why this modern airliner crashed.
I am going to remain quiet on this subject until the next major update from Brazil.
Two passengers who are known to authorities to be linked to Islamic terrorism were on board the Air France flight 447 which crashed last week. The French secret service established the highly significant terror connection (names of passengers who are radical Muslims considered a threat to the French Republic) while reviewing the AF447 passenger list.
It is almost certain that there were computer malfunctions possibly caused by a frozen pitot tube which resulted in slow transit into the story – terrorism has still not been ruled out in this case. One source has said that the names of these passengers could simply be a coincidence and that they are not terrorists at all.
France has received a few threats from radical Islamic terrorists groups since the French troops were sent to fight in Afghanistan in the “War on Terror”. French Security chiefs have been worried similar suicide attacks to September 11th. It is improbable that a terror organisation would want to do anything at such a remote location, in the past they have used highly populated cities and buildings to carry out their actions – unless perhaps any bomb or device was triggered prematurely with disastrous consequences.
A French nuclear submarine is now in the area listening for the Black Box pingers which will cease to operate in about 3 weeks. So far 41 bodies have been recovered, as well as the tail & rudder and some smaller pieces of Af447s debris about 1,100 kms off the coast of Brazil.
The Brazilian Air Force have arrived at the scene where they thought debris was to be found the UFO (unidentified floating object) was only a wooden pallet. No debris has actually been found. However some new theories have emerged.
1) The plane was flying too slowly through the storm. This was mentioned in a French Newspaper, stating that the A330 flew too slowly through the storm and may have stalled. Although this has been played down in the media it could have been a primary cause of the crash.
2) There was icing and this made the plane travel slower, or disrupted the airflow over the wings causing problems with the aircrafts control surfaces. Icing should not appear at those altitudes but for some reason it is presumed that icing may have occurred for flight 447.
3) There are reports of errors and warnings about speed. Did the pilots have incorrect information about the planes speed and this would have caused item #1 above (referring to the speed at which Flight 447 travelled through the storm). Could the aircrafts pitot tubes have been partially blocked, causing incorrect speeds to be displayed as they climbed. The pitot tubes have been involved in some major crashes over the years and cause very unusual cockpit readings as well as very sudden crashes, as seen on Seconds from Disaster and Air Crash Investigation on National Geographic.
Whatever the news over the weekend, it seems very very strange that absolutely no debris has been recovered.
It may be a long time before we find out the cause of the flight 447 crash.
Over 3 days after the event, progress is still quite slow. Many news agencies are even reporting that Air France received bomb threats in the days leading up to the event.
So far a large debris field has been found, but the largest section found to date is only 7 metres in length. The investigators are pescimistic about finding the black boxes which are reported to be between 9,800 – 12,000 feet below the surface.
There are still a lot of conflicting theories on what happened. On this site I have seen lots of people searching for “Flight 447 UFO” – this is ridiculous … strange people out there!
It could take 1-2 weeks before they collect enough wreckage to run metalurgical tests to check for explosive traces or the distinctive bending of the metal which is caused when a bomb explodes.
All anyone can do now is wait and see.