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Only the court and the prosecutor’s office are aware of why Boeing is not involved in Case 24120/2012

30 January 2013 / 23:01:47  GRReporter
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- This failure was due to a flaw in the design of the aeroplane. The electronic system and the mechanics were not functioning. The aeroplane design created problems, very serious problems, and it was the reason for the pilots not to find out in time that the cabin was not pressurised. The design of the specific model has been modified with recommendations for safety and improvement of the flying capacity. The so-called Airworthiness Directives in aviation, so that no legitimate flights by that aircraft type are made as happened on that fatal day. Both the processes and the signal systems have been changed and there is already a visual indication that alarms the pilot of a problem with the cabin pressure. This was the only model without visual indication of pressure loss. It had only sound indication that was the same for another system - the problem was reported both before and after the crash, namely that the pilots confuse this sound alarm and associate it with another reason that turns it on. This is something that happened during this flight too, unfortunately.

- Is the Boeing Company a party in this trial?

- The Boeing Company is not involved in the Greek criminal procedure.

- Why is that?

- This is a question for the prosecution and the court.

- Doesn’t the CrewVoiceRecorder in the cockpit give a clear answer to the cause of the crash?

- In aeroplanes, unlike ships, the time of recording the talks, which take place inside the cockpit by the CrewVoiceRecorder is very short. It records only for half an hour, if I remember well, which is absolutely insufficient to prove and reproduce what happened in a flight that lasted more than three hours, unlike in ships where it records the voices of the last 24 hours. I can give you the example of the sinking of the cruise ship Sea Diamond in Santorini in 2007, which I also represent. In this case, we know everything that was discussed on the bridge in the last 24 hours before the accident because it was recorded. Unfortunately, we cannot do this when it comes to aeroplane flights. If it were possible to record the conversations throughout the flight, we would not have grey areas and unanswered questions that are currently harassing all of us.

- There is some evidence that has been lost.

- When we requested the examination of some key evidence such as the pressurisation control panel and the switch, which selects the mode of its operation, we were surprised to find out that the switch had been lost. It had gone. We all understand that this is an important issue. This switch should have been examined in order for us to see the traces on its bottom side and to conclude how it was pushed from the position in which it was and what exactly its original position was. However, it has disappeared.

- In this situation, do you think that if a reinvestigation is carried out, it could help to reveal the truth?

- When you have 121 dead and the same number of families that have been destroyed, what should be done primarily for the sake of the memory of those people and for the sake of their families is to fully clarify what happened. I believe that a reinvestigation of the case will help a lot to prove what happened.

- In the trial, you are defending Helios’ chief pilot Ianko Stoimenov. What are the specific charges against him?
- Ianko Stoimenov to me is an outstanding professional, conscientious, a highly knowledgeable person, entirely dedicated to aviation. He was a chief pilot for Helios Airways. According to the theory, since the switch was in the "manual" position, then both the pilots were not trained well. This theory blames Ianko Stoimenov for not training them well in his capacity of chief pilot and not implementing the training sessions required by law. The examination of the records of the two pilots shows that not only Stoimenov, but the company as a whole, were doing not just what they were required to do, but that they went beyond the requirements of international law. Significantly, both pilots had repeatedly participated in trainings for failures in the pressurisation system in previous years. They were rated capable by dozens of trainers. They were very experienced and the documents show that they passed all statutory trainings and testing. I believe without reservation that Ianko Stoimenov fulfilled his obligations to the minutest detail.

Tags: Ianko StoimenovHelios AirwaysStelios VoudourisCourt of AppealBoeingPlane crash
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