Lion Air Cockpit Voice Recorder Reveals Pilots’ Frantic Search For Fix | TODAY

Lion Air Cockpit Voice Recorder Reveals Pilots’ Frantic Search For Fix | TODAY

September 17, 2019 89 By Kailee Schamberger


FLIGHTS. TOM COSTELLO HAS BEEN COVERING THIS FROM THE BEGINNING. GOOD MORNING.>>Reporter: KBOGOOD MORNING. THIS WAS AN ALL OUT EMERGENCY BATTLE TO SAVE THAT AIRCRAFT. THE PILOTS DID NOT UNDERSTAND WHY THAT PLANE WAS IN A NOSE DIVE AND HEADED FOR THE WATER. ULTIMATELY THEY WERE NOT ABLE TO SAVE THE AIRCRAFT, AND WE ALSO KNOW THAT THE DAY BEFORE A VERY SIMILAR EMERGENCY HAPPENED TO THE SAME PLANE, DIFFERENT CREW, BUT THANKS TO THE VERY QUICK THINKING OF A THIRD PILOT ON BOARD, THEY DID SAVE THE PLANE. THIS MORNING AS THE 737 MAX FLEET REMAINS GROUNDED AMID MULTIPLE INVESTIGATIONS, NEW DETAILS ABOUT LAST OCTOBER’S LION AIR CRASH THAT KILLED ALL 189 PEOPLE ON BOARD. ACCORDING TO THREE PEOPLE WITH KNOWLEDGE OF THE JUST RELEASED VOICE RECORDER, AS THE PILOTS OF THE 737 MAX WERE SCRAMBLING TO KEEP CONTROL OF THE PLANE, THEY DESPERATELY BEGAN SOURCING A HANDBOOK STRUGGLING TO UNDERSTAND WHY THE JET WAS LUNCHING DOWNWARDS RUNNING OUT OF TIME BEFORE HITTING THE WATER IN INDONESIA. NBC NEWS DID NOT HAVE ACCESS TO THE RECORDING OR THE TRANSCRIPT. IT COMES AS NEW INFORMATION IS RELEASED ABOUT ANOTHER 737 MAX 8 FLIGHT JUST A DAY BEFORE THE LION AIR CRASH WHERE PILOTS GOT HELP FROM AN UNEXPECTED SOURCE AS THAT JET BEGAN DIVING DOW DOWNWARD. AN OFF DUTY PILOT WHO HAPPENED TO BE RIDING IN THE COCKPIT CORRECTLY DIAGNOSED THE PROBLEM TELLING THE CREW HOW TO DISABLE A MALFUNCTIONING FLIGHT CONTROL SYSTEM CALLED PLMCAS AND SAVING THE PLANE. INVESTIGATORS EXAMINING THIS MONTH’S INDONESIAN CRASH CONSIDERING HOW THE COMPUTER ORDERED THE PLANE TO DIVE AND WHETHER THE PILOTS HAD ENOUGH TRAINING TO RESPOND APPROPRIATELY TO THE EMERGENCY AMONG OTHER FACTORS. MEANWHILE, THIS MORNING CAPTAIN CHESLEY SULLY SULLENBERGER KNOWN AS ONE OF AMERICA’S BEST KNOWN PILOTS IS WEIGHING IN. SULLENBERGER FAMOUS FOR THAT RADIO CALL DURING A HARROWING EMERGENCY LANDING. CAPTAIN CHESLEY SULLENBERG SAVED THE LIVES OF EVERYONE ON BOARD IN 2009. NOW WITH THE 737 MAX FLEET GROUNDED, CAPTAIN SULLY IS CRITICIZING THE FAA FOR LETTING BOEING CONDUCT CERTIFICATION INSPECTIONS ON ITSELF SAYING IT HAS CREATED INHERENT CONFLICTS OF INTEREST, AND A MARKET WATCH OP-ED SULLENBERGER WRITES BOEING AND THE FAA HAVE BEEN FOUND WANTING IN THIS UGLY SAGA THAT BEGAN YEARS AGO BUT HAS COME HOME TO ROOST WITH TWO TERRIBLE CRASHES. A FORMER NTSB CHIEF AGREES.>>IT’S NOT A QUESTION OF WHETHER THE FAA HAS ENOUGH RESOURCES AND ENOUGH TALENT TO DO THE JOB. IT’S THEIR RESPONSIBILITY TO DO THE JOB.>>Reporter: UNDER STAFFED AND UNDER FUNDED, CONGRESS ALLOWED THE FAA TO DELEGATE MORE AUTHORITY TO BOEING TO CERTIFY THE NEW 737 MAX MEETS FAA CRITERIA. NOW BOEING IS UNDER FIRE FOR NOT TELLING PILOTS ABOUT THE NEW ANTISTALL SOFTWARE PROGRAM CALLED MCAS, SUSPECTED IN LAST OCTOBER’S CRASH IN INDONESIA AND LAST WEEK’S CRASH IN ETHIOPIA. THE “NEW YORK TIMES” REPORTING THE FAA GAVE MCAS LITTLE ATTENTION. FORMER FAA ACCIDENT INVESTIGATIONS CHIEF JEFF GUZZETTI.>>BOEING WILL ALWAYS BE PERCEIVED AS BEING PROFIT ORIENTED AS COSTS WHEN ONE OF THEIR AIRPLANES CRASHES.>>Reporter: THE FAA HAS BEEN GOING FOR MORE THAN A YEAR RIGHT NOW WITHOUT A LEADER. NO ADMINISTRATOR, BUT AN ACTING ADMINISTRATOR. NOW THE WHITE HOUSE HAS NOMINATED A NEW HEAD OF THE FAA. HIS NAME IS STEVE DIGXON, FORME DELTA EXECUTIVE IN CHARGE OF OPERATIONS. HE WILL BE NOMINATED. THE SENATE WILL HAVE TO APPROVE HIM. MOST AVIATION EXPERTS I TALK TO THINK HE’S A GOOD CHOICE.>>THE LION AIR CRASH HAPPENED IN OCTOBER. THAT WAS FIVE MONTHS AGO, AND ONLY NOW IS INFORMATION COMING OUT ABOUT IT. I GUESS THE QUESTION IS LIKE WHAT TOOK SO LONG?>>Reporter: YEAH, LISTEN, IT ALWAYS TAKES A WHILE TO READ THROUGH THOSE BLACK BOXES AND THE INDONESIAN AUTHORITIES ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR DECIDING WHAT THEY’RE GOING TO RELEASE TO THE PUBLIC. WE DID KNOW THAT THIS WAS ALLEGEDLY AN MCAS PROBLEM, A SOFTWARE PROBLEM. BOEING IS NOW PUSHING THROUGH A SOFTWARE UPGRADE TO ADDRESS THAT. AS FOR WHY IT TOOK SO LONG TO GET THE ACTUAL INFORMATION OUT OF THE BLACK BOXES, THAT’S UP TO THE INDONESIANS.>>YOU MENTIONED THE SOFTWARE PROGRAM MCAS, WHICH I REMEMBER YOU REPORTING ABOUT IT. IT WAS THE LEADING THEORY THAT IT WAS ESSENTIALLY GOING HAYWIRE THAT ALLOWED THIS TO HAPPEN. WHY IS THAT — I MEAN, I KNOW THEY’RE GROUNDED NOW, BUT AM I CORRECT THAT THE SOFTWARE UPDATE HADN’T EVEN GONE THROUGH AS RECENTLY AS LAST WEEK. WHAT’S TAKEN SO LONG WITH THAT?>>Reporter: THAT’S RIGHT. STILL HASN’T GONE THROUGH. BOEING IS SAYING IT COULD COME AS SOON AS NEXT WEEK. I THINK THIS IS AN IMPORTANT POINT. THAT MAY ADDRESS THE ISSUE WITH A SOFTWARE GLITCH WITH MCAS. THAT IS NOT GOING TO GET THIS PLANE BACK IN THE AIR. THIS IS NOW GOING TO HAVE TO BE CERTIFIED AGAIN BY THE FAA. THEY WANT TO MAKE SURE THERE’S NOT ANOTHER PROBLEM OR TWO THAT’S PLAYING INTO THIS SCENARIO, AND NTHEN ONCE THE UNITED STATES DECIDES THE MAX CAN FLY AGAIN, OTHER COUNTRIES ARE GOING TO HAVE TO MAKE THAT DECISION.>>THERE’S THE WHOLE QUESTION OF PILOTS, TRAINING, 737 PILOTS WHO FELT LIKE THEY SHOULD HAVE HAD A LOT MORE TRAINING ON THIS NEW VERSION OF THE 737.>>AND ARE NOW DEMANDING