Taipei, June 30 (CNA) Pilot error is to blame for a TransAsia Airways plane crash in Taipei last year, according to a final report released Thursday by Taiwan’s Aviation Safety Council (ASC).
Accident investigators have pinpointed the two TransAsia flight GE235 pilots’ failure to follow flight procedure and a series of mistakes made due to ineffective communication between the two pilots as the main cause of the aviation accident that killed 43 people.
Flight GE 235 crashed into the Keelung River on Feb. 4, 2015 less than three minutes after takeoff from Taipei Songshan Airport, which is located some 5.4 km (3.4 mi) to the west of the crash site.
The flight, operated with a 10-month-old ATR 72-600 aircraft, was flying from Taipei to the outlying island of Kinmen with 53 passengers and a five-member crew on board. There were 15 survivors.
The pilots should have aborted its departure after noting that a power-control system had not been armed, investigators indicated in the report.
The investigators have disclosed that the aircraft’s automatic take-off power control system (ATPCS) had not initially been armed when the turboprop began its departure roll.
Four seconds after taking off, the monitoring pilot detected an error in the ATPCS. However, the flying pilot replied: “OK, continue takeoff.”
The system provides automatic support — including uptrim and auto-feathering — in the event of an engine failure during takeoff.
In addition, the crew inadvertently reduced power from its healthy left-hand engine, instead of the right-hand engine, which was exhibiting problems, according to the report.
The series of mistakes were made due to poor communication of the two pilots about information they got about the engine problems, the investigators stated, citing information heard from the captain on the cockpit voice recorder.
The error led to both of the airplane’s engines losing power. The voice recording indicated that one of the pilots exclaimed: “No! Wrong throttle (was pulled back)!” just eight seconds before the crash.
Source: Focus Taiwan