Recent Developments

Speiser Krause in the News and Recent Developments

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Update on the Crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302

In the aftermath of the crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302, numerous aviation authorities throughout the world have called into question the safety of the 737 Max 8 model aircraft.  Although the Federal Aviation Administration and The Boeing Company have issued statements attesting to the aircraft’s safety, foreign aviation authorities are justifiably concerned that the crash of Ethiopian Flight 302 and Lion Air Flight 610 share a common causal connection.  As a result, various foreign countries, and airlines, have grounded the 737 Max 8 fleet until more information is known regarding the causes of each crash.  China, Singapore, Australia, Malaysia, India and the European Union have each banned the 737 Max 8 aircraft from operating within its borders or airspace.  A copy of the Emergency Airworthiness Directive issued by the European Union prohibiting the 737 Max 8 aircraft from operating in Europe can be found here.  In fact, the only two governments continuing to allow the aircraft to operate within their borders or airspace are the United States and Canada.

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Monday, March 11, 2019

Crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302

On March 10, 2018 Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 crashed six minutes after take-off, tragically killing all 157 passengers and crew.  The flight departed from Addis Ababa Bole International Airport in Ethiopia bound for Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi, Kenya.  Citizens from at least 32 different countries were on board, and many were employees of the United Nations who were travelling to Kenya to participate in an environmental conference. 

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Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Preliminary Report Released by Indonesian Aviation Authorities

Indonesian authorities released a preliminary report regarding their findings into the crash of Lion Air Flight 610.  As mentioned in prior posts, early reports indicated that accident investigators were focusing on the aircraft’s new Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (M.C.A.S.) which is an automated system designed to prevent the aircraft from entering an aerodynamic stall.  The preliminary report confirmed that this was the investigators’ focus, although the report stated that it was still too early to identify a specific cause for the crash.

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Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Update on the Crash of Lion Air Flight 610

Although no official findings have yet to be released, Indonesian aviation authorities are focusing on the aircraft’s automatic system designed to prevent the 737 Max 8 aircraft from entering an aerodynamic stall.  The system, not found on predecessor 737 models, is known as the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System or M.C.A.S.  The system works in conjunction with Angle of Attack sensors located in the fuselage of the aircraft.  These sensors measure the angle of the aircraft in relation to the air that comes across it.  If these sensors indicate that the angle of attack or AOA is too high, they will transmit this information to the M.C.A.S. which will cause the forward edge stabilizers located on the aircraft’s tail to push up thereby forcing the nose of the aircraft downward.  If the M.C.A.S. did in fact engage as a result of faulty information transmitted by the aircraft’s AOA sensors, the pilots would have been confronted with a situation for which they were not trained and would have required them to rapidly engage in a series of steps to take control of the aircraft away from the M.C.A.S.  If they attempted to simply raise the nose of the aircraft by pulling back on the control yoke – which likely would have been the flight crew’s natural reaction – this would have had little effect as the forces exerted by the M.C.A.S. are much greater than the pilot could muster through pulling back on the control yoke.  Instead, the pilots would have had to quickly respond with a number of actions for which they had received no training in order to regain control of the aircraft and disable the M.C.A.S.

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Thursday, November 15, 2018

Crash of Lion Air Flight 610

On October 29, 2018, Lion Air Flight 610 crashed shortly after take-off killing all 189 passengers and crew.  Flight 610 was a scheduled domestic flight from Soekarno-Hatta International Airport in Jakarta to Depati Amir Airport in Pangkal Pinang that should have taken a little over an hour.  The aircraft, a relatively new Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft, Registration Number PK-LQP, crashed approximately 11 minutes after take-off due to a steep uncontrolled descent into the Java Sea off the coast of Java. 

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Monday, June 4, 2018

Crash of Piper Navajo Chieftan

On Saturday, June 2, 2018 at approximately 2:35 p.m. a twin engine Piper PA-31-350 Navajo Chieftan aircraft, bearing FAA registration number N41173, crashed approximately two miles off the shore of Indian Wells Beach near Amagansett, New York.  Tragically, three passengers and the pilot were killed in the crash.  One of the passengers was identified as the registered owner of the aircraft.

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Friday, May 4, 2018

NTSB Update on Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 Mid-Air Engine Failure

On Thursday, May 3, 2018 the National Transportation Safety Board issued an update in connection with its ongoing investigation concerning the fatal mid-air Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 engine failure.  The Investigative update can be found here.

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Thursday, April 26, 2018

Update on Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 Mid-Air Engine Failure

On April 20, 2018, the Federal Aviation Administration issued Emergency Airworthiness Directive (“AD”) 2018-09-51 that incorporated, in part, a Service Bulletin (“SB”) 56-7B 72-1033 issued by CFM International, S.A., the manufacturer of the engine that failed in-flight on April 17, 2018, that killed a passenger.  An AD is a rule published by the FAA that requires certain actions be completed for an aircraft to be considered airworthy. 

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Friday, April 20, 2018

Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 Mid-Air Engine Failure

On Tuesday, April 17, 2018 at 10:27 a.m. Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 departed New York’s LaGuardia Airport bound for Dallas, Texas.  As the aircraft was climbing to cruising altitude west of Philadelphia, passengers described what sounded like an explosion from the left side of the aircraft.  As alerts and alarms blared in the cockpit, the aircraft experienced a rapid decompression and oxygen masks dropped from the cabin ceiling.

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Tuesday, March 27, 2018

NTSB Releases Preliminary Report on the Crash of Liberty Helicopters AS350B2, N350LH

On March 26, 2018, the National Transportation Safety Board released its Preliminary Report in connection with its investigation into the helicopter crash.  The Preliminary Report, a copy of which can be found here, sets forth a brief synopsis of the facts relating to crash based upon preliminary examination of the aircraft wreckage and an interview with the surviving pilot.  The Report contained a discussion of the pilot’s prior flights on the day of the accident, as well as his supposed safety briefings that he gave the passengers prior to the accident flight, including apparently the manner in which the passengers were to extricate themselves in the event of an emergency landing.

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Friday, March 23, 2018

Update Number 2 on the Crash of Liberty Helicopters AS350B2, N350LH

On March 22, 2018, the Federal Aviation Administration issued an Emergency Order of Prohibition, No. FAA-2018-0243, prohibiting the use of supplemental passenger restraint systems in “doors open” or “doors off” commercial flights that cannot be released quickly in the event of an emergency.  The Prohibition Order also prohibits such flights unless the passengers are at all times properly secured using FAA-approved restraint systems.

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