The Flydubai FZ981 flight crashed in Rostob-on-Don Russia last week. The final minutes are reported to have been a chaotic mess. There was shouting, screaming and panic in the cockpit.
It is believed that the crash was caused by pilot and co-pilot’s failure to manage the emergency landing. According to the Russian newspaper Kommersant, an official source has confirmed that the investigation is now focused on pilots’ errors.
The plane tried to land due to bad weather, the effort didn’t go as planned. One of the pilots pulled the control stick more than it was required. The panicky actions caused the plane to stall and then nosedive in an overpowering manner.
The Interstate Aviation Committee, investigating the crash, say that the investigation will be made public in less than two weeks.
According to the story published in Kommersant, the black box recording revealed that flight FZ981 had made two unsuccessful efforts to land. Due to harsh wind, they were unsuccessful. The third time pilots went for the “manual landing” approach.
One of the pilots pressed the TOGA “Take Off Go Around” button and subsequently turned off the autopilot.
The unnamed source at Kommersant also explained that the pilots did not cope well with the situation. The diving rubber and horizontal stabilizer, controls that help steer the plane, were not properly managed.
When the pilot pulled the stick up, the divider and stabilizer locked the plane into an uncontrolled upward mode – much like a fighter plane. Since TOGA was already off, the plane went into a stall made. It reached an angle from where it couldn’t be controlled.
Afterwards, inevitable the plane nosedived.
How did all this happen?
According to cockpit recording, the two pilots wanted to do opposite things. Since the leaked recording details are not official, we cannot confirm which pilot was taking which action.
One pilot was keen on gaining altitude, he turned engines to full thrust mode. The aircraft continued its climb.
The other pilot thought it was mistake and did exactly the opposite, he pushed his stick down to decelerate the climb. “Wait! Where are you flying? Stop! Stop!” – He can be heard saying, reportedly.
The aircraft was getting opposite instructions from two sides, this made the aircraft go completely out of control.
When the plane plummeted, the two pilots started coordinating – but it was too little, too late.
Flydubai FZ981 crashed into the ground and exploded on March 19, 2016. All 55 passengers and seven crew members were killed in the crash.