Video Captures Taiwan Airplane Crash

_80771317_planeThere is a horrific videotape capturing the crash of a TransAsia airplane crashing in Taiwan. The plane in the videotape below appears to lose control after takeoff, clip a bridge, and then crashes into a river. That is amazing is that people survived this crash and were seen swimming from the wreckage. This video is likely to be analyzed for years not just in the crash investigation but the likely litigation over the accident.

At least 19 of the 58 passengers were killed.

The plane was left in pieces and half-submerged in the Keelung River.

There are still 24 missing passengers according to the last reports.

The ATR-72 turbo-prop plane had just taken off from Taipei Songshan Airport and was heading to the Kinmen islands near south-eastern Chinese city of Xiamen. Just before the crash, the pilots radioed air traffic control with “Mayday, mayday, engine flame out.”

The fact that people can survive such a crash is astonishing and a little good news in this unfolding tragedy.

6 thoughts on “Video Captures Taiwan Airplane Crash”

  1. Actually most military pilots have fewer hours than civilian trained ones. By the time I got to the airlines, I had over 5,000 hrs of flight time. That was the total time my former boss at my flight school had after 30 years in the USAF. This of course only applies to US airlines. Most foreign airlines have first officers with very low time and that includes European airlines. That is why I think US airlines have the best records of all since our requirements for flight time for F/O are far above that of most nations. I flew to Ireland on Aer Lingus on a 747 and found the F/O had fewer hours than I did. I think he had about 600 hrs. I took a small twin flight in Australia to Ayers Rock and the woman pilot had only 300hrs total which would barely qualify her for flying that plane in the US as a private pilot or commercial pilot in local flying only.

    The reason I am in favor of keeping the high time requirements that the US has is that after you get your ATP hours of minimum of 1500 hrs, a pilot has had real emergencies and horrific weather and other things to deal with. After that seasoning, you are not so adrenaline fused when things go wrong. I could not believe that one of the crew radioed that they had lost an engine since that is the LAST item to do in such a situation. That is the mark of a very green pilot since the ground can do nothing at all to help at that point. At least they got the gear up before they crashed and should have made losing an engine a non-event. It is premature of course to make any conclusion about the cause of this crash, but from the scant evidence we have, it appears that the pilots did not do their jobs properly since losing one engine is a non-event in an aircraft like the ATR which is an excellent airplane. There may well be other causes such as fuel contamination or some other cause which would have made this situation non-recoverable. So I am loathe to say any more about this, but given my knowledge of Asian crews and many foreign carriers, the pilots may be the cause of this. If this were an American crew, I would most likely look more at major systems failure which precluded a successful recovery. Though we have had our fair share of screw-ups doing stupid things too. It is tragic for all concerned and I hope some good will come out of this and my condolences and concern to all.

  2. Pilots for commercial airlines are currently the least skilled that they’ve ever been, and it’s only getting worse. Now, pretty much the entire flight is automated. Even with extensive experience, pilots lose their skills and are more unprepared for emergencies since they rarely actually fly.

  3. Joel – wow! Flying sideways and upside down through a twisty canyon!

    You’re right. I, too, feel there is an advantage in have tested military pilots fly commercial planes, with a lot of hours, over someone who just did the minimum hours in private classes.

    I wonder if they find it boring.

  4. All these Asian airlines. Crashes for all the curable reasons. But it starts with went in dumb, come out dumb too. So, dont fly on any Asian airline. I rode on one out of Hong Kong to the states. Jeso.

  5. All these Asian airlines are taking a beating. I prefer former military sky jocks as pilots. More reliable and quick to react in crisis situations.

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