Mystery with the crash of the Boeing 737 in Ethiopia
The creepy similarities with the crash of the Lion Air plane last October
The crash of the Ethiopian Airlines plane, which caused the tragic death of 157 people on Sunday morning, has shocked the international public opinion.
The Boeing 737 MAX 8 carrying 149 passengers and eight crew members (all of whom are now believed to be dead by official authorities) from Addis Ababa to Nairobi crashed just six minutes after taking off from the Ethiopian capital.
As it has become known, the pilot of the fatal aircraft reported difficulties and asked for permission to return a few moments before the crash.
The fact that this aircraft was brand new (four months old) and was delivered to Ethiopian Airlines, its first user, just last November, is widely commented by the international media.
The similarity of this particular air tragedy with the crash of the Indonesian Lion Air aircraft in October 2018 is also extensively commented on.
In both cases the fatal aircraft were Boeing 737 MAX 8s that had just been delivered to the airlines a few months earlier, and had only a few hundred flight hours on their "counters". Also, in both tragedies, the planes crashed a few minutes after takeoff.
The fact that today they had the second air tragedy with this type of aircraft in the last six months, is expected to cause a big "headache" for Boeing, which will definitely be called to give explanations for the strange coincidence with its aircraft.
The US Transportation Safety Board will send a team of experts to Ethiopia to investigate the current tragic plane crash with the Boeing 737 MAX. The construction company Boeing has also expressed its readiness to provide technical assistance.
The Lion Air plane tragedy and the investigation into the causes
On October 29, 2018, a Boeing 737 of the Indonesian Lion Air crashed shortly after taking off from Jakarta, killing all 189 passengers.
The plane was carrying 178 adults, one child, two infants, two pilots and six cabin crew members, according to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSC).
Minutes after take-off, at 6.20, the pilot reported some technical difficulties and requested permission from the control tower to return to the airport. Evidence from FlightRadar24 shows that something went wrong two minutes after take-off, when the plane was 2.000 feet (610 meters) high.
He first dived 500 feet, tilted to the left and then started climbing again, to 5.000 feet. The signal was lost while it was developing speed and was at about 3.650 feet.
The Boeing 737 MAX8 was the latest model of the famous Boeing 737 - the popular aircraft preferred by low-cost companies around the world.
The Lion Air plane was almost brand new. It made its first flight on August 15 and the company claims that an engineer, specializing in Boeing models, had deemed it airborne capable before the fatal flight. An unspecified "technical issue" he had encountered on his previous route from Bali to Jakarta had been "resolved in accordance with the procedures".
According to a preliminary report from the Indonesian authorities, a faulty sensor provided incorrect data to the aircraft's computers, causing the aircraft's muzzle to sink repeatedly to the ground as pilots struggled to control it. The malfunctioning sensor had not been repaired before the fatal flight, although it had been found to be malfunctioning on the previous flight of the aircraft.