Date
26 March 2017
Neither of its two turboprop engines was operating when the TransAsia Airways plane crashed in February. Photo: AFP
Neither of its two turboprop engines was operating when the TransAsia Airways plane crashed in February. Photo: AFP

Captain switched off engine before plane crashed, probe finds

The captain of a TransAsia Airways ATR plane that crashed in Taiwan in February, killing 43 people, switched off the working engine after the other lost power, the Aviation Safety Council (ASC) has confirmed.

About three minutes after takeoff, the pilot was heard to say, “Wow, pulled back the wrong-side throttle”, Reuters reported, citing the latest report of the investigation, released Thursday.

Data readings showed the almost-new turboprop ATR 72-600 stalled and crashed shortly after the remaining engine was switched off.

The ASC report, which neither assigns responsibility nor suggests recommendations for improvement, paints a more detailed picture of the evidence than a preliminary report released days after the crash.

A draft of the final report will be issued in November, with the final report to be completed in April 2016, the council said.

The cause of the crash and recommendations for the future will be included in the final report.

The plane, which can fly on one engine, was carrying 58 passengers and crew when it lurched nose-up between buildings, clipped an overpass and a taxi with one of its wings and then crashed upside down into a shallow river in Taipei.

Fifteen people survived.

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