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NTSB release animation of Asiana Airlines Boeing 777 crash

NTSB release animation of Asiana Airlines Boeing 777 crash

The US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has released a cockpit animation based on the flight data of Asiana Flight 214. This serves as a powerful reminder to understand and acknowledge the FMAs and, if in doubt, throw the approach away and go around.

The Asiana Airlines Boeing 777-200ER crashed at San Francisco International Airport on 6 July 2013 at the end of a flight from Seoul, Korea. It was the first fatal crash involving a Boeing 777 since its entry to service in 1995.

Of the 307 people aboard, two passengers died at the crash scene (one from being run over by an airport crash tender and a third died in a hospital several days later. 181 others were injured, 12 of them critically. Among the injured were three flight attendants who were thrown onto the runway while still strapped in their seats when the tail section broke off after striking the seawall short of the runway. 

On June 24, 2014, a press report release by the NTSB found that the "Mismanagement of Approach and Inadequate Monitoring of Airspeed Led to Crash of Asiana flight 214". The NTSB determined that the flight crew mismanaged the initial approach and that the airplane was well above the desired glidepath as it neared the runway. Additionally, over-reliance on automation and lack of systems understanding by the pilots were cited as major factors contributing to the accident.

The NTSB further concluded that the flight crew’s insufficient monitoring of airspeed indications during the approach resulted from expectancy, increased workload, fatigue, and automation reliance and that the Pilot Flying’s faulty mental model of the airplane’s automation logic led to his inadvertent deactivation of automatic airspeed control. In addition, Asiana’s automation policy emphasized the full use of all automation and did not encourage manual flight during line operations. The flight crew’s mismanagement of the airplane’s vertical profile during the initial approach led to a period of increased workload that reduced the pilot monitoring’s awareness of the pilot flying’s actions around the time of the unintended deactivation of automatic airspeed control. Insufficient flight crew monitoring of airspeed indications during the approach likely resulted from expectancy, increased workload, fatigue, and automation reliance. Furthermore, lack of compliance with SOPs and CRM were cited as additional factors.