TransAsia aircraft crashed: Captain had concerns over plane

February 6, 2015 4:39 pm
Taiwanese
officials say the plane had been in service since April last
year and had undergone a routine safety check last month.
Meanwhile,
a couple and their toddler who survived the crash changed seats just
before the plane took off – a move which may have saved their lives.
The
plane came to rest upside-down in a river. An emergency exit was above
the water line, allowing some passengers to escape as rescuers arrived
on the scene.
The survivors included three members of the Lin
family, including a 2-year-old boy who was found floating in the water
“with [his] face turning pale and lips turning purple”, according to United Daily.
He was pulled from the water by his father and was saved by being resuscitated.

The TransAsia aircraft crashed soon after take-off from Taipei. Photo / AP
The captain of the doomed TransAsia Flight GE235 complained of
“engine abnormalities” but was rebuffed when he asked for an urgent
inspection of the plane shortly before its final take-off, it has been
claimed.
Liao Jianzong is among 32 people so far confirmed to
have died when the aircraft crashed into a river shortly after taking
off from Taipei’s Songshan airport on Wednesday.
An unnamed whistleblower told ’s Liberty Times
newspaper that Liao sought a thorough inspection of the plane after
noticing engine abnormalities during its previous flight. The pilot
registered the problem on a flight log, the newspaper added.
The
source claimed that TransAsia staff had inspected only the plane’s
communications equipment rather than performing a full inspection, for
fear of incurring penalties for delaying the flight to the island of
Kinmen.

Wu Huh-sheng, a company manager, rejected the allegation, saying TransAsia received no reports of “faulty engines”.
So
far no cause has been given for the crash, which was captured in
dramatic footage from a dashboard camera. Civil aviation officials said
the flight took off at 10.53am local time and lost contact with
controllers two minutes later.
However, in their final message to air traffic controllers, the pilots suggested the plane had had catastrophic engine failure.
“Mayday!
Mayday! Engine Flame-out!” one pilot says. A flame-out is where an
engine loses power, with possible causes ranging from a bird strike to
fuel starvation.
The ATR-72-600 prop-jet aircraft crashed shortly
after take-off en route to the outlying Taiwan-controlled Kinmen
islands. There were 53 passengers, including two children and 31
mainland Chinese citizens, and five crew on board.
The claims emerged as the death toll from the disaster rose. Eleven people are still missing while 15 survived.
Taiwanese
aviation officials say the plane had been in service since April last
year and had undergone a routine safety check last month.
Meanwhile,
a couple and their toddler who survived the crash changed seats just
before the plane took off – a move which may have saved their lives.
The
plane came to rest upside-down in a river. An emergency exit was above
the water line, allowing some passengers to escape as rescuers arrived
on the scene.
The survivors included three members of the Lin
family, including a 2-year-old boy who was found floating in the water
“with [his] face turning pale and lips turning purple”, according to United Daily.
He was pulled from the water by his father and was saved by being resuscitated.
The
newspaper said the father had asked to switch from the left to the
right side because he was concerned about a noise coming from the left
wing. In the crash, the left wing clipped the highway and the plane
cartwheeled into the river.
Footage captured on a dashboard
camera suggested that the pilots may have been trying to avoid striking
an apartment block just before the crash.
The captain, Liao, 42, and the first officer, Liu Zizhong, 45, both died in the crash.

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