News

Faulty device led to fatal Amsterdam plane crash, investigators find

Rebecca Thomson

A faulty altimeter is thought to have caused the Turkish Airlines crash that killed nine people in the Netherlands last week.

The left-hand altimeterwas found by Dutch investigators to have suddenly changed its reading from 1,950ft to minus 8ft. The plane was landing on auto-pilot and the change caused the engine to cut out.

The faulty reading made the engine think the plane was only a few metres from the runway, making it cut out.

The Dutch Safety Board released a preliminary report yesterday saying a similar problem had occurred twice before, flightglobal.com reported.

The data "irregularity" on the 25 February flight occurred on the approach to a runway at Amsterdam airport.

"This change had a particular impact upon the automatic throttle system which provides more, or less, engine power," inquiry board says.

Voice recordings from the cockpit showed the pilots did not initially think the reading was a problem. By the time they took action it was too late to get the plane back under control.

The Dutch Safety Board said "extra attention" should be paid to the altimeter when using automatic systems to land or fly a plane. It is requesting that the 737 operating manual places greater emphasis on not using automatic systems to fly the plane if the altimeter is faulty.


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