Re: First 757 crash (and first AA fatality since 1979)

From:         ebright@coil.com (Jim Ebright)
Date:         12 Feb 1996 19:27:26 -0800
Organization: Central Ohio Internet Link, Inc.  (614)242-3814
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In article <airliners.1996.143@ohare.Chicago.COM>,
Gunnar Aaboe  <gunnaraa@sn.no> wrote:
...
>There have also been a lot of near accident,
>discovered by radar operators. 

Cali had no radar, it having been blown up by rebels years earlier.  The 
replacement system was/is sitting in shipping trailers at the airport.  
It has been there for a year and a half and has not been installed.  I 
assume the delay is in in defference to Columbia's main export industry 
not desiring radar coverage ;)
 
So there was no radar operator to warn the AA flight of the deviation 
from pattern.

>Is it a common factor that accidents happens in bad
>weather conditions and during landings ? 

Bad weather makes it a lot harder to fly aircraft, safty margins are much 
smaller.  And landings are when the aircraft is closest to the ground, 
the hitting of which is usually the immediate cause of aircraft 
destruction.

>Why is "pilot error" nearly always the reason ? 
>(Is this like the dataoperator unable to find the mistake and clames it 
>is a virus ?) I've been told there is
>some research reports on this fenomen, but they are not public...

As Far As I Know (AFAIK), almost all of these studies are public.
Accident reports are public, quite well researched and documented, even in 
the military.  In large part, it is thru these activities that accidents have 
come to be understood and, subsiquently, aircraft have become much safer.

I don't believe pilot error is the dominate cause of accidents in any 
aircraft except in general aviation (private).  There you are facing a 
large number of relatively inexperienced folk with a small number of 
hours in the air.  Just like in automobiles, this is the most accident 
prone group.  I am sure some of the gurus will post statistics on this 
point :)

 
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 A/~~\A   'moo2u from osu'   Jim Ebright   e-mail: ebright@bronze.coil.com
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