Nearly a year after the crash of the Asiana Airlines Boeing 777 at San Francisco Airport, the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board ( N.T.S.B. ) has released new evidence explaining the causes of the accident. According to the N.T.S.B., the main reasons that led to the 'plane crashing just metres before the runway was due to the pilots' "mis-management" on their final approach.
Christopher Hart, N.T.S.B. Acting Chairman :
''What we found was that again the automation operation performed as designed, but the pilots didn't fully understand what the automation would and would not do. Then the question was did the pilots understand how it was designed to perform. That's why we made the recommendations about not only the complexity of the automation, but also the training so that the pilots will understand what the automation will and will not do.''
Over-dependence of the crew on the automated systems, together with its mis-management during the approach, and, aggravated by fatigue, were therefore the multiple factors that led to the crash.
The "complexity" of the B-777's navigation systems, such as the auto-pilot and auto-throttle, are also singled out by the N.T.S.B.. An argument that Boeing challenges, observing that these systems have been used safely for more than 55 million landings.
The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board has issued 27 recommendations to the various parties involved in the accident. Amongst them, the N.T.S.B. has asked the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration ( F.A.A. ) to require Boeing to create a specific training course to improve the understanding of the automatic modes for B-777 pilots, in general, and those of Asiana Airlines with a view to better training their pilots in manual approaches. On 6th., July 2013, the crash of Flight 214 cost the lives of three people.