Air France Crash - The Plot Thickens
May 23, 2011 11:34am CST
Remember that fateful Air France that crashed into the Atlantic Ocean nearly two years ago? Recall: Air France flight 447 crashed into the Atlantic on June 1, 2009, four hours into a flight from Rio de Janeiro to Paris. All 228 passengers and crew died. While initial claims have indicated that technical failures with air speed indicators might have led to the crash (see second link). The latest investigations after finding the flight's black box and flight recorder have shockingly revealed that the Captain of the flight was NOT in the cockpit when the plane went into trouble. Four hours into the flight, I just could not understand and most of all believe how he could have vacated the cockpit. I do not know what this news will do to the airline but I believe it will be another unsettling moment for the families of the deceased. Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1389754/Pilot-Air-France-flight-crashed-Atlantic-years-ago-NOT-cockpit-trouble-hit.html http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1282367/Air-France-crash-The-truth-disaster-killed-228-people.html
23 May 11
Stuff happens and maybe he just went to the restroom. It could have been as simple as that. I am very sorry for the families of the victims though as they will be reliving this moment by moment all over again. Hopefully they will eventually find closure. the worse airline I flew about 15 years ago was the Cuban one. The pilots were smoking and wen I saw the stewardesses light up too I was convinced that we were going to crash. The fight was so rough and horrible. Have never flown on their airline again.
24 May 11
cynthiann, If this was true, then I believe a lot of people will be asking the question why the captain chose such a crucial time to take his break especially when the flight is flying through a storm during that time. Because if they are flying through it, then it should be all hands on deck while the other aspect would be to skirt round the storm. I suppose with this revelation, both areas were not covered and sadly the consequences was really beyond anyone's expectations. As much as I did not like what is being revealed here, I am also disappointed with how this fact was being revealed and released into the media. The leak really discredit the investigating team's reputation and professionalism. I hope that this compromise would not make this evidence to be inadmissible for the current legal litigation. About your flight experience, I could not help recalling my experience when smoking was allowed in the flights. It was so bad that I would refuse to board when I am not being assigned with a non smoking seat as the experience is similar to being in a chimney.
• United States
23 May 11
I have several friends who are commercial piolets and they tell me that on long flights such as flight 447 it is not unusual for the crew to leave the cockpit and move around to prevent cramping and fatigue. Only one member would be gone at a time. The other criticism in the article of using the autopilot and not having the manual flying of the plane would result in a rougher flight and increased fuel usage. Where you can fault the crew is the decision to fly through the storm and not go around the storm system.
24 May 11
bobmnu, I do not like to pin it on the pilot but if you can remember the initial findings report, the flight was actually entering bad weather. Under such circumstance, the least anyone would expect would be that the captain be at the front seat overseeing the whole of that bad weather segment where the flight could come across bad turbulence and other sudden emergencies. I can understand pilots taking turns for a break but as early as three hours into the flight and bad weather on course. I think there is some gross professional misconduct on the captain's part when he took his break so early in the flight when what he should have done was to fly the plane around the storm system (as you've mentioned). The other disturbing thing here is the way this information is being leaked into the media. The investigating team certainly lacks professionalism and integrity, to which I am really disappointed with them.
• United Kingdom
23 May 11
I read this article and it shocks me that the pilot was not in the cockpit when the plane ran into trouble and crashed. The other two in the cockpit didn't sort out the difficulty and then the plane crashed into the Atlantic Sea. This news is very upsetting for the relatives of those killed on the Air France plane from Rio De Janeiro to Paris on 1st June 2009. I wonder where the pilot was.
24 May 11
maximax8, I am really disappointed on 2 fronts here. One is the investigating team in charge for leaking out such a disturbing discovery. I understand about uncovering the truth but to do it openly over the media with the rest of the uninvolved world which would sending everyone into unnecessary frenzy. I couldn't help feeling disgusted with the lack of professionalism here. Second, as much as it is disturbing to find the truth that the captain was not in his office at the crucial moment, I believe everyone especially those next of kins of the deceased on the fateful flight will be shooting for the roof in every sense. Stirring up every closed chapter - I just couldn't help feeling bad for them. At the back of my mind, I am wondering if there's another conspiracy theory where this disclosure would discredit the evidence into the civil courts making it inadmissible for legal proceedings, favoring the plaintiffs.