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Revealed: Final six minutes inside doomed Ethiopian flight

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Pilots flying last month’s ill-fated Boeing 737 struggled to control the plane as soon as it took off, fresh reports indicate.

Preliminary findings of the accident that killed all 157 people on board reveal that the six-minute flight was hell for the crew and passengers.Thirty-six of the victims were Kenyans.

Like riding a 72-tonne bucking bull at the rodeo, the pilots had to contend with wild swings to either side and jerky climbs and falls before the Ethiopian Airlines flight ploughed nose-first into the ground.

The impact shredded the plane and its occupants, leaving almost no body parts for the rescue crew to retrieve.

“The aircraft impacted in a farm field and created a crater approximately 10 metres deep, with a hole of about 28 metres width and 40 metres length,” the preliminary report reads.

Data from flight recorders recovered at the crash site tell of the last moments of Flight ET302, including the commands issued by the 29-year-old Kenyan-born captain to his First Officer, four years his junior.

The instructions did little to help control the plane, which investigators believe had multiple engineering flaws.

Captain Yared Mulugeta, who was coming to his mother in Mombasa, is described as having been extremely fit for the flight.

READ ALSO:   There are no bones, not even a skull — Father of Ethiopian Airlines pilot speaks

He had not flown in the preceding 72 hours, thus eliminating any fatigue issue.Instead, investigators indicated that the sensors mounted on either side of the plane gave contradicting information relating to the aircraft’s angle of flight.

Specifically, while the jet took off in what appeared as normal lift at 8.37am, an error message was noted within 70 seconds to mark the start of the wild roller-coaster ride

.“At 8.38am, shortly after liftoff, the left and right recorded angle of attack values deviated.

Also, the airspeed, altitude and flight director pitch bar values from the left side noted deviating from the corresponding right side values,” the investigators reported.

All the while, it appears from the report, the plane would have been flying on its side as the pilots fought to level its flight.

“The left side values were lower than the right side values until near the end of the recording,” the report reads.

Just about this time, the captain, who was clearly distressed, sought to engage the autopilot by shouting “Command!” to his assistant, hoping that the computerised system would find a remedy for the fault.

It was a rough one minute, where the captain also directed the First Officer to contact the air traffic controllers at Bole International Airport seeking clearance to return.

READ ALSO:   8 Kenyan families to sue Boeing over Ethiopian Airlines crash

“Six seconds after the autopilot engagement, there were small amplitude roll oscillations accompanied by lateral acceleration, rudder oscillations and slight heading changes. These oscillations continued also after the autopilot was disengaged,” the report said, describing the first two minutes of the flight.

Clearance for return to Bole Airport was granted, but the aircraft could not make it back. It ploughed into a recently cleared farm field some 60km from the airport.

The last words from the pilots as the plane started to nosedive, after desperate attempts to point it back up, were “left alpha vane”.

It would appear that the vane, a small appendage that measures the angle of attack of the plane, was totally dysfunctional and could not be rescued.

Before the crash, the plane had only done 1,330 hours of flying, indicating it was among the newest aircraft in service.

“Most of the wreckage was found buried in the ground; small fragments of the aircraft were found scattered around the site in an area about 200m wide by 300m long.

The damages to the aircraft are consistent with a high energy impact,” the report reads.

Ethiopia’s Transport ministry last Thursday said the pilots did everything right and by the rule book, leaving the manufacturer to blame for the accident.

READ ALSO:   Boeing 737 is forced to make an emergency landing at New Jersey's Newark airport after smoke fills cargo hold

source:standard.co.ke

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Africa

Plane with 17 passengers on board crashes in DRC

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A passenger plane with about 17 passengers on board crashed on Sunday in the city of Goma in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, killing several people, the provincial governor’s office said.

The plane, operated by the local company Busy Bee, crashed during takeoff for a flight to the city of Beni, North Kivu Governor Carly Nzanzu Kasivita’s office said in a statement.

The number of fatalities was not yet clear.Busy Bee was not available for comment.Air accidents are relatively frequent in Congo because of lax safety standards and poor maintenance. \All Congolese commercial carriers, including Busy Bee, are banned from operating in the European Union.

A cargo plane departing from the same airport crashed an hour after take-off in October, killing all eight passengers.

By Standard

READ ALSO:   Boeing 737 is forced to make an emergency landing at New Jersey's Newark airport after smoke fills cargo hold
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Africa

Why school kept news of student’s family members’ death a secret for 22 days

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A school in Tanzania decided not to inform a 16-year-old girl that her entire family of five had been wiped out by flash floods last month to enable her complete her examinations.

Anna Zambi’s parents and siblings were on their way to visit her in school for prayer day ahead of her final secondary school examinations when they met their death.

TRAGIC INCIDENT

A private car in which they were travelling in was swept away in floods following incessant rains in Handeni District, Tanga Region.

According Tanzanian daily, The Citizen, the school chose to keep the tragic incident a secret to enable Zambi complete her exams in peace.

The incident happened just two days before the start of the examinations.

The head teacher of Mother Teresa of Calcuta Girls Secondary School revealed how he managed to ensure the student was kept in the dark over the tragedy that took the lives of her parents and three other siblings on October 26.

GRAVEYARDS

In breaking communication at the school, he said, all students were no longer allowed to watch TV on the pretext that it was examination time and that they must always be busy with their books.

On Monday, almost a month after the incident, she traveled back home to be with her family after finishing the exams, only to learn that her parents and siblings were no more.

READ ALSO:   Boeing 737 is forced to make an emergency landing at New Jersey's Newark airport after smoke fills cargo hold

It was not until Saturday, November 16, when a wave of grief and deep sorrow rolled through relatives and mourners who had gathered for hours to receive Zambi and take her to the graveyards of her parents and three siblings.

At the same time, the Tanzanian government has pledged to support the bereaved teenager, saying that it would pay for her psychological rehabilitation and education.

By NN

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Africa

Invitation to the African Girls Hope Foundation Annual Gala happening this Saturday in Atlanta

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BY BEN KAROMO

African Girls Hope Foundation (AGHF) annual Gala is happening this Saturday at the Kenyan American Community Church in Marietta, Georgia, USA. AGHF  is a non-profit founded by Grace Faraja, a former refugee from the 1990s civil war that ravaged the DRC. She started the foundation to help educate girls in rural Congo caught in the ongoing civil unrest, poverty and disease.

As a former beneficiary of a full scholarship that changed her life, Grace believes providing an education to orphaned and less privileged girls can open a world of opportunities to them and help then end the cycle of poverty and early marriages.

This year, AGHF’s aim is to provide full-year scholarships to 120 girls at a cost of $29 per month per girl. We are seeking your help to raise funds to meet the overall goal of $34,000 for the year 2019-2020.

We ask you to help us meet this goal by donating on our website at https://africangirlshopefoundation.com/.

We prayerfully desire to support the education of 120 girls in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Kenya. With hope that God will open doors to other African countries in the near future. We have partnered with a local pastor running a school in the village of Mulenge in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

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Our partner has identified numerous girls in the village who are orphans of father and mother. Girls selected as AGHF beneficiaries are 65% of orphans of both parents.

Atlanta residents, please join us for our Annual Fundraising Gala dinner, to be held on November 9th at the Kenyan American Community Church KICC in Marietta, Georgia. Dinner and parking will be provided.

Below are some of the girls who need our help:

 

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