Re: Airbus Safer?

Date:         19 Aug 98 00:57:31 
From:         kls@ohare.Chicago.COM (Karl Swartz)
Organization: Chicago Software Works, Menlo Park, California
References:   1 2 3 4
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>>That would be the Habsheim crash on June 26, 1988 ...

>There was an article in AW&ST a few months ago discussing the possibility
>that the inflight data recorder was switched after the crash. This
>conclusion was reached based on the pattern of strips on the casings of
>the recorder that was supposed to be in place, and the one actually found
>(or planted).

Interesting.  I don't recall seeing that article.  Can you give us an
issue date and page number?

While I didn't catch the AW&ST article, I've seen the Equinox segment on
it.  (Equinox is a UK program resembling a mix of Nova and some of the
Discovery Channel stuff in the US.)  They had film of the boxes being
put in the boot, er, trunk of a car soon after the crash -- spiffy new
boxes, just as you'd expect from a brand new airplane that had crashed
in a manner that produced no fire and relatively little damage to the
tail area where the recorders are located -- and interviews with several
people who had seen the old and battered boxes in the DGAC's posession.

The same program also discusses an apparent five-second gap in the FDR
data.  Early in the flight, the CVR and FDR are in sync, but at the end
the FDR is five seconds ahead of the CVR.  Apparently the allegedly
missing five seconds correspond to a critical point in time -- when many
of the witnesses reported a boom which might have been an engine surge
or stall, and also when Asseline (the captain) claims he pulled back on
the side-stick but the plane pitched down instead of up.

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