2 Flight Attendants Were Thrown From Plane, Survived
Crew says it was relying on automated cockpit equipment for speed
By John Johnson, Newser Staff
Posted Jul 9, 2013 6:38 PM CDT
Authorities investigate the crash. NTSB chief Deborah Hersman is pointing toward the plane.   (AP Photo/National Transportation Safety Board)

(Newser) – An amazing detail emerged today from the NTSB about the Asiana Airlines crash over the weekend: Two female flight attendants working in the rear of the plane weren't in their seats when it slammed into a seawall, and both were ejected upon impact, reports NBC News. "They were found down the runway and off to the side of the runway," says NTSB chief Deborah Hersman. Both survived with injuries that haven't been specified. Other revelations:

  • The crew said it was relying on something called an "autothrottle" to maintain speed, raising questions about whether the cockpit's automated gear malfunctioned or was programmed incorrectly, reports the AP.
  • Not only was the pilot flying the plane still in training on the 777, the instructor pilot supervising him was making his first trip as an instructor, reports CNN. It was their first time flying together.
  • The instructor pilot told authorities he realized soon before the crash that the plane was too low, but their efforts to abort were too late, reports the LA Times.
  • The four pilots aboard—three were in the cockpit and one in the cabin—were not tested for drugs or alcohol after the crash because the US doesn't have the authority to test foreign pilots.
  • The plane did a 360-degree spin before coming to a stop.
  • Hersman re-emphasized it's too early to blame pilot error for the crash.

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Showing 3 of 19 comments
toomanycars
Jul 10, 2013 1:01 AM CDT
The third pilot was supposed to be checking the airspeed and altitude. Was he watching porn on his iPad instead?
winterfairy
Jul 10, 2013 12:23 AM CDT
"because the US doesn't have the authority to test foreign pilots." bullshit, they crash here, they get tested.
boxcar
Jul 9, 2013 9:59 PM CDT
Evidently engine auto-pilot either wasn't doing its job or had to be over ridden to get more power BEFORE the pilot nosed the plane up to make the runway and that didn't happen because the plane "settled" on what is called "Backside of the Power Curve" where even IF power was added, it didn't matter, the plane would still "Settle" Tail First as it apparently did. By "Settle" I mean the plane was in Landing Mode where pilot is taking steps to ensure the plane does NOT FLY once its settled onto the runway- problem is they never made it to the runway so had to abort but it came too late obviously. Somehow the plane did NOT maintain a safe flying speed up to the point of "Flaring Out" when you rotate aircraft up to increase drag and "Settle" onto runway. IF they had flown it into the ground, things could've got much worse as there is a delicate balance between aircraft flying speed, attitude and engine thrust to achieve a successful "Flare-Out" tangent to the runway.