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What: Cityjet Avro RJ-85/Air France en route from Edinburgh to Paris
Where: Birmingham UK
When: Jul 8th 2010
Why: While en route, the Air France flight developed “technical problems” and diverted to Birmingham where it made a safe landing. Passengers were provided alternative flights.
Avro (1963) was taken over by Hawker Siddely, and later merged with British Aircraft Corp and Scottish Aviation (1977) , which was succeeded by British Aerospace( 1999) , and then succeeded by BAE Systems.
George’s Point of View
Technical issues? In this day and time, it seems to me that “technical issues” is an inadequate description of a problem. These have all been lumped at one time under “technical issues”:
- Polish air force Tupolev 154 that crashed during an attempted landing in Smolensk, Russia, on April 10, 2010. 96 killed
- Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737 that took off in Beirut, caught fire and crashed into the Mediterranean on Jan. 25, 2010. 90 killed
- Yemenia Airways Airbus A310 that crashed into the Indian Ocean on approach to Moroni, on June 30, 2009. 152 killed
- Air France Airbus A330 en route from Rio de Janeiro to Paris that crashed into the Atlantic Ocean on June 1, 2009. 228 killed
- Turkish Airlines Boeing 737 that crashed shy of Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport runway on Feb. 25, 2009 9 killed (135 aboard)
A cursory announcement of a problem should be specific.
Was it a problem with an indicator? an alarm system? a physical problem? a communication problem? loss of control? overheating? leaks? maintenance?
The only way design issues can be caught ahead of the disaster is if full disclosure of the exact problem is noted publicly, and cross-checked with all other incidents and problem reports. If Air France or Cityjet Avro wants to present details, I would be delighted to present them in this forum here.
Air France—like all carriers—needs to practice full disclosure. If the cause is unknown, then it is multiplicatively more important to disclose the exact issue so that the problem can recorded, cross checked, and be tracked down. Maybe if there were less secrecy and more open communication in the field of aviation safety, the 575 lost in recent crashes would still be here.