Almost a year after the Indonesian AirAsia airbus crash on December 28th, 2014, more wreckage has been discovered from the plane. The aircraft went missing while above the Java Sea on a trip from Surabaya to Singapore. At the conclusion of the first investigation, investigators had initially said that the stormy weather in the area was a major factor in the crash reported by BBC; now they are not so sure.
It is said that faulty equipment in the plane was the main factor in the crash. Officials say that the plane’s rudder control system malfunctioned four times during the flight and had occurred 23 times in the previous year. This was because of a cracked soldering connection in the system which sent warning signals to the pilots also reported by BBC.
To fix this problem midflight, the crew on board tried resetting the computer system which then disengaged the autopilot. Once it was disabled, the pilots lost control of the plane.
The co-pilot took over and pulled up on the controls making the plan angle upward and then stall. The pilot tried to push down to bring the nose down but was too late.
Overall, all 162 passengers were killed which included 17 children and a baby. Only 106 bodies have been recovered since the discovery of the crash. The recovery of the remaining bodies has been recently terminated reported by ABC News.
When the plane crashed, NBC News reported that in the final moments, the plane rolled 104 degrees to the left before nose diving at a rate of up to 20,000 feet per minute into the sea. The nose reached a peak angle of 24 degrees before the captain ordered to pull down.
Officials say if the pilots were better trained, this problem was easily avoidable. The co-pilot was at the controls at the time of the crash, and the captain did not take control once the plane started to be pulled up required by the airline’s procedures. This was all recorded in the ‘black box’ flight recorder.
The captain tried pushing forward on the controls to bring the plane’s nose down when he realized they were at a too steep of an incline. The co-pilot kept pulling on his controls, canceling the pilot’s controls because of the plane’s automated fly-by-wire system.
This system is made to cancel out opposing instructions through the plane’s controls to cause the plane to be more stable. So when the co-pilot was pulling up and the pilot was pushing down, the pilot’s commands were cancelled out.