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NTSB Finds Boeing Partly to Blame for Asiana SFO Crash

Asiana Airlines

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has released a synopsis of its findings and probable cause report regarding the July 6, 2013 crash of Asiana Flight 214, Boeing 777-200ER, at San Francisco International Airport. The plane crashed during final approach at SFO when it struck a seawall at the end of runway 28L. The plane was coming in from Incheon International Airport in Seoul, Korea with 248 passengers onboard.

The NTSB determined at today’s board meeting in Washington, D.C., that the probable cause of this accident was the Asiana flight crew’s mismanagement, lack of training, and confusion during the final moments of the flight. The report states that the pilot unintentionally deactivated the automatic airspeed, and that the flight crew inadequately monitored their airspeed and delayed execution of a go-around after they became aware that the airplane was below acceptable glidepath and airspeed tolerances.

Also noted as a contributing factor to the crash, were the complexities of the Boeing 777 autothrottle and autopilot flight director systems that were inadequately described in Boeing’s documentation and manuals.

If the autothrottle automatic engagement function (wakeup), or a system with similar functionality, had been available during the final approach, it would likely have activated and increased power about 20 seconds before impact, which may have prevented the accident, the NTSB findings state.

The law firm of Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman represents 16 passengers injured in the Asiana crash. The firm was pleased with the NTSB’s findings and recommendations.

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