Mismanagement blamed for NE China plane crash

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, June 29, 2012
Adjust font size:

Mismanagement and poor supervision have been found to be the causes of a deadly jet crash that killed 44 people and injured 52 others in northeast China in 2010, a state panel set up to investigate the crash said on Friday.

An ERJ-190 jet operated by Henan Airlines crashed while landing at Lindu Airport in the city of Yichun City in northeast China's Heilongjiang Province on Aug. 24, 2010. [File photo]

An ERJ-190 jet operated by Henan Airlines crashed while landing at Lindu Airport in the city of Yichun City in northeast China's Heilongjiang Province on Aug. 24, 2010. [File photo]

The panel advised meting out punishment to 19 people responsible for the accident, including the plane's captain, airline officials and local civil aviation authorities, according to a report released by the State Administration of Work Safety.

The investigation results came nearly two years after a Brazilian-made ERJ-190 jet operated by Henan Airlines crashed while landing at Lindu Airport in Yichun city in northeast China's Heilongjiang Province on Aug. 24, 2010. It was the deadliest commercial plane crash in China since 2004.

Henan Airlines, whose license was temporarily seized after the crash, should be fined 5 million yuan (about 791,000 U.S. dollars) and may only resume operation after restructuring and examination, the panel ruled.

The plane's captain should be held criminally liable, while officials should be given disciplinary penalties, be demoted or dismissed from their posts, it suggested.

Captain Qi Quanjun violated operational rules by attempting to land the plane when visibility at the airport was below safety standards, causing the accident, according to the report.

Qi also failed to properly evacuate the passengers and rescue the injured after the accident, as he left the plane without authorization, it added.

The panel suggested revoking Qi's pilot license, removing him from his post, expelling him from the Communist Party of China and pursuing criminal charges against him.

Henan Airlines poorly supervised its pilots, failing to coordinate flight crew members and properly train its crew, the report noted.

The panel suggested punishing 10 officials at the airline and its controlling shareholder, Shenzhen Airlines, as well as sacking Li Qiang, then general manager of Henan Airlines.

Investigators also blamed local civil aviation authorities for inadequate regulation and safety management loopholes.

An official at the local air traffic control bureau made an error while entering the airport's code in a weather database, resulting in a failure to update Henan Airlines regarding weather conditions at the airport, the panel found.

It urged airline companies to improve crew management, provide better emergency training and strengthen flight safety regulations.

Established on Aug. 27, 2010, the panel was made up of officials from six central-government ministries and the Heilongjiang provincial government.

The deadly accident rang an alarm bell for China's aviation safety as the country boosted air transport capacity to accommodate increasing air travelers and expanded the airport network to smaller cities like Yichun.

China will have over 240 airports for civil aviation use by 2020, up from 180 in 2011, Li Jiaxiang, head of the Civil Aviation Administration of China, said earlier this month.

Lindu Airport has upgraded its safety apparatus to allow planes to land or take off in lower visibility, but it has stopped operating night flights since the crash, which occurred at around 9:38 p.m. on Aug. 24.

The airport is now connected to Beijing via Harbin and to Shanghai via Dalian by flights operated by China Southern Airlines and China Eastern Airlines. New flights to Guangzhou via Weihai will be launched from July 3.

Despite the sad memory of the plane crash, Wang Aiwen, Party secretary of Yichun, said the city appeal to tourists would not be affected by the accident.

A city with about 1 million population surrounded by forests, Yichun is known as "the capital of woodlands" and serves as an idyllic summer resort.

Flight tickets to Yichun have been hard-won this summer and Lindu Airport is expected to handle 80,000 air trips this year, up 120 percent year on year, according to airport authorities.

Print E-mail Bookmark and Share

Go to Forum >>0 Comment(s)

No comments.

Add your comments...

  • User Name Required
  • Your Comment
  • Enter the words you see:   
    Racist, abusive and off-topic comments may be removed by the moderator.
Send your storiesGet more from China.org.cnMobileRSSNewsletter