Published: Thu, November 08, 2018

Lion Air jet crashed in Indonesia after key sensor replaced

Lion Air jet crashed in Indonesia after key sensor replaced

The advice is based on preliminary information gathered in the investigation of a Lion Air flight that crashed in Indonesia last week killing all 189 on board, a person familiar with the matter told Reuters.

Boeing said it had issued an "Operations Manual Bulletin" addressing flight crew procedures in cases where there is "erroneous input from an [Angle of Attack] sensor".

The latest directive follows advisories issued by USA watchdog Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and Boeing regarding B 737 MAX planes, following the crash of a Lion Air aircraft in Indonesia last month.

This measures at what angle an aircraft is flying and air is passing over the wings. If the angle is too extreme it can cause the wings to lose lift and the aircraft to stall.

The doomed jet was a Boeing 737-Max 8, one of the world's newest and most advanced commercial passenger planes, and there is still no answer as to what caused the crash.

"The draft of what will be conveyed by Boeing this morning has been presented to us", air accident investigator Nurcahyo Utomo said.

However, a year ago Boeing had to briefly ground its 737 MAX fleet as discrepancies were found in its engines.

Indonesia's transportation safety committee said it had agreed with Boeing on procedures that the airplane manufacturer should distribute globally on how flight crews can deal with the sensor problems.


Southwest issued a statement saying it has thoroughly reviewed Boeing's guidance. Boeing's bulletin said it was directing flight crews to existing guidelines.

The Indonesian Ministry of Transportation has begun an audit of Lion Air (JT, Jakarta Soekarno-Hatta) and has also started impromptu checks of various other Indonesian carriers following the crash of one of the low-priced carrier's B737-8s on October 29. Chairman Soerjanto Tjahjono said the airspeed indicator and sensor problems are related. If pilots aren't careful, they can cause severe nose-down trim settings that make it impossible to level a plane.

Currently, Jet Airways and SpiceJet fly Boeing 737 MAX planes in India.

Boeing issued a statement on an update to the 737 MAX flight manual on Tuesday, Nov. 6, a day after investigators discovered JT610's faulty airspeed indicator. The error erroneously tells pilots that there's a stall in airflow, triggering an automated system that points the plane downward in an effort to regain speed.

Certainly, Indonesian search and rescue officials had trouble locating the wreck, despite encountering a large amount of wreckage in the four days leading up to the discovery of the fuselage.

The Lion Air crash is the worst airline disaster in Indonesia since 1997, when 234 people died on a Garuda flight near Medan.

Meanwhile, the search operation to recover the passengers, crew and the airplane's cockpit voice recorder is ongoing.

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