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Old Jul 8, 13, 2:10 am   #16
 
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On the News tonight in Australia they called the runway a "crime scene". I thought that was an unusual way to describe it. I would of called it the accident scene.
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Old Jul 8, 13, 2:38 am   #17
 
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Originally Posted by CDTraveler View Post
Does "pilot error" at some point in time become a criminal act? Could, would the pilot be prosecuted if he is found to be at fault for the crash?

Anybody know for sure what the laws are?
It depends on the country.

France - yes. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Air_France_Flight_296
Excerpt: Prosecutions[edit]
Captain Asseline, First Officer Mazieres, two Air France officials and the president of the flying club sponsoring the air show were all charged with involuntary manslaughter. All five were found guilty. Captain Asseline was initially sentenced to six months in prison along with 12 months of probation. The others were sentenced to probation. During the appeal process, Captain Asseline's sentence was increased to 10 months of imprisonment along with 10 months of probation. Asseline walked free from the court and said he would appeal to France's Supreme Court, the Cour de Cassation. According to French law, Asseline was required to submit himself to the prison system before his case could be taken up by the Supreme Court.

Indonesia - Yes. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Garuda_...sia_Flight_200
Excerpt: On 4 February 2008 the captain, Marwoto Komar, was arrested and charged with six counts of manslaughter.[26][27] The charge carries a penalty up to life imprisonment if the court finds the crash was deliberate. Short of that finding, the lesser charge of negligent flying causing death, carries a maximum sentence of seven-years.[28] The copilot testified that he had told the captain to go around because of excessive speed, and that he then had blacked out due to the severe buffeting.[29] On 6 April 2009, the captain was found guilty of negligence and sentenced to 2 years in jail.[30] Despite all evidence pointing towards severe pilot error, the captain's conviction was quashed by the Indonesian High Court on September 29, 2009.[

Someone already cited Brazil as another country where pilots can be jailed for an aircraft accident.

US - almost always no.

Japan - Yes. http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/200.../#.Udp6AOzn_IU


Asian countries tend to prosecute the pilots. I will be surprised if the Asiana pilots aren't prosecuted in South Korea.
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Old Jul 8, 13, 3:17 am   #18
 
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Originally Posted by MSPeconomist View Post
The question reminded me of a crash a couple years ago over the Amazon involving a domestic airline/flight and a large private jet for American corporate executives. IIRC the private pilots were jailed in Brazil.
I think they were found guilty of not engaging the (mandatory) collision warning system.....
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Old Jul 8, 13, 6:17 am   #19
 
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Originally Posted by lin821 View Post
OP's not shooting for speculation. Did you even read OP's posts carefully?
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Originally Posted by Y29M View Post
This isn't speculation by any means, it's a general question posed by the OP
First time on the internet you two? Have you read earlier responses in this thread (which are already off topic)?
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Old Jul 8, 13, 9:55 am   #20
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Originally Posted by cbn42 View Post
With regard to criminal liability, it would apply only in case of negligence. Think about driving: getting into an accident is not a crime, even if it was your fault because you weren't paying attention. But if you were violating a specific rule (driving while intoxicated, talking on the phone, etc.) then that is a criminal matter.
Where is the line drawn between "negligence" and "violating a specific rule?" I can see a huge grey area in the middle - if that indicator light comes on and you ignore it, is that negligence? What if you think you know better and you're wrong? Do (in the US) FAA rules require that a pilot take action if warning light X comes on?

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Originally Posted by cbn42 View Post
Interesting article, but I don't think I agree with its conclusions. I also think some of the points raised in it are outdated as there is ever more technology telling us what the pilot was doing and exactly when s/he did it.
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Old Jul 8, 13, 10:06 am   #21
 
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Here's a link to a story on the prosecution in Brazil:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/huff-w...l-plane-crash/
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Old Jul 8, 13, 11:48 am   #22
 
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South Korea:

Article 160 (Offense against Danger Causing by Negligence in Aviation)

(1) Any person who damages or destroys by negligence an aircraft, airfield, airfield facilities or navigation safety facilities, or causes any danger in aviation by other ways, or crashes or overthrows the aircraft in flight, shall be punished by imprisonment or without prison labor for not more than one year, or by a fine not exceeding twenty million won. <Amended by Act No. 4647, Dec. 27, 1993; Act No. 5794, Feb. 5, 1999>
(2) If a person commits the offense as referred to in paragraph (1) by any malpractice or severe negligence, he shall be punished by imprisonment or without prison labor for not more than three years, or by a fine not exceeding fifty million won.
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Old Jul 8, 13, 12:42 pm   #23
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Originally Posted by gqZJzU4vusf0Z2,$d7 View Post
South Korea:

Article 160 (Offense against Danger Causing by Negligence in Aviation)

(1) Any person who damages or destroys by negligence an aircraft, airfield, airfield facilities or navigation safety facilities, or causes any danger in aviation by other ways, or crashes or overthrows the aircraft in flight, shall be punished by imprisonment or without prison labor for not more than one year, or by a fine not exceeding twenty million won. <Amended by Act No. 4647, Dec. 27, 1993; Act No. 5794, Feb. 5, 1999>
(2) If a person commits the offense as referred to in paragraph (1) by any malpractice or severe negligence, he shall be punished by imprisonment or without prison labor for not more than three years, or by a fine not exceeding fifty million won.
I am not a lawyer, so I'm not sure I understand part (1) correctly. Does the negligence provision apply to all of what follows it, or does the "or" section that I underlined set up a second set of provisions, meaning that the law would apply to acts other than negligence?


Thanks much to those who have provided helpful and on-topic comments and turned my son's question into a learning experience for the community.
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Old Jul 8, 13, 1:39 pm   #24
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Originally Posted by CDTraveler View Post
Where is the line drawn between "negligence" and "violating a specific rule?" I can see a huge grey area in the middle - if that indicator light comes on and you ignore it, is that negligence? What if you think you know better and you're wrong? Do (in the US) FAA rules require that a pilot take action if warning light X comes on?
Unless there is a specific law making it a crime to fly a plane with an indicator light on, I don't think a pilot could be prosecuted for it criminally. It could still be used to establish the airline's liability in a civil case.
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Old Jul 8, 13, 2:57 pm   #25
 
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Originally Posted by Palal View Post
If this was the pilot's first landing in a 777 and he flew only 747s before, it's conceivable that he was aiming too low.
This is incorrect. It was the captain's first landing at SFO in a 777. He had done other landings in the 777, and had also flown other aircraft into SFO.

Besides, I think this is backwards- if, for the sake of argument he had reverted to 747 experience, wouldn't he tend to fly a bit higher to maintain the same visual perspective as on a 747? (or am I misunderstanding?)

Another data point--

Singapore Airlines Flight 006, a 747, attempted takeoff from a taxiway at TPE in 2000, and crashed into construction equipment, killing 83 people.

Taiwan prosecutors considered indicting the flight crew, but ultimately decided not to because the accident was chiefly caused by low visibility. They did, however, decide to ban the capt and first officer from flying into Taiwan for 12 months. The 3rd pilot, however, was not banned because he was not responsible for the takeoff.
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Old Jul 8, 13, 6:12 pm   #26
 
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Originally Posted by Maxwell Smart View Post
Besides, I think this is backwards- if, for the sake of argument he had reverted to 747 experience, wouldn't he tend to fly a bit higher to maintain the same visual perspective as on a 747? (or am I misunderstanding?)
You are correct. Assuming he was using a 747 landing picture and been flying proper target speed, he would land a 777 long, not short.
The extremely slow speed required him to have a higher nose up attitude which would result in a higher landing picture - so if he were using 777 references, the slow speed would cause him to land short.

I've never piloted a 747 or 777; 767 is as big as I've flown. However, in order to get a tail strike on the sea wall, he had to have a very nose high attitude. Of course he was in the stick shaker so we know he had an abnormally nose high pitch attitude.


Back on topic - based on article 160 above, I expect the crew to be prosecuted in Korea.
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Old Jul 8, 13, 8:09 pm   #27
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Originally Posted by Annalisa12 View Post
On the News tonight in Australia they called the runway a "crime scene".
And the NTSB has explicitly stated that it is NOT a crime scene.

I think I'll trust them instead.
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Old Jul 9, 13, 5:18 am   #28
 
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> However, in order to get a tail strike on the sea wall, he had to have a very nose
> high attitude. Of course he was in the stick shaker so we know he had an abnormally
> nose high pitch attitude.

Quite odd circumstances. I'm curious how the AT and airspeed bug were configured.
Were the AT's On, Disengaged, or Off?

Also curious about how long he was in the shaker ...

I've got my hunches, but am not gonna feed the trolls.
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Old Jul 9, 13, 10:49 am   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iflyjetz View Post
You are correct. Assuming he was using a 747 landing picture and been flying proper target speed, he would land a 777 long, not short.
The extremely slow speed required him to have a higher nose up attitude which would result in a higher landing picture - so if he were using 777 references, the slow speed would cause him to land short.

I've never piloted a 747 or 777; 767 is as big as I've flown. However, in order to get a tail strike on the sea wall, he had to have a very nose high attitude. Of course he was in the stick shaker so we know he had an abnormally nose high pitch attitude.


Back on topic - based on article 160 above, I expect the crew to be prosecuted in Korea.
Which crew? The trainee pilot? The trainer? Possibly even a 777 experienced pilot who rested through this landing instead of being in the cockpit? In aviation, who is responsible here?
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Old Jul 10, 13, 7:17 pm   #30
 
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Originally Posted by sbm12 View Post
The US is NOT going to prosecute the pilots. The only memory that I have of pilots being prosecuted are those pilots who have flown with a blood alcohol level above maximum permissible.
Even in cases where pilot error has clearly been the reason for an accident in the US, I can't think of a single pilot being prosecuted.

(Personal speculation) South Korea, on the other hand, is very likely to prosecute all four pilots.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gqZJzU4vusf0Z2,$d7 View Post
> However, in order to get a tail strike on the sea wall, he had to have a very nose
> high attitude. Of course he was in the stick shaker so we know he had an abnormally
> nose high pitch attitude.

Quite odd circumstances. I'm curious how the AT and airspeed bug were configured.
Were the AT's On, Disengaged, or Off?

Also curious about how long he was in the shaker ...

I've got my hunches, but am not gonna feed the trolls.
The pilots likely went into FLCH mode (flight level change). There's something called 'FLCH Trap'. It's where the autothrottles go to idle and remain there.
It's explained much better than I could in the fourth paragraph: http://www.flyingmag.com/blogs/going...essons-learned

Had the pilots manually pushed the throttles up to go around setting a couple of seconds earlier, they may have been able to avoid the accident. But it was a good thing that they pushed up the power when they did; it decreased their descent rate, which made the crash much more survivable.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MSPeconomist View Post
Which crew? The trainee pilot? The trainer? Possibly even a 777 experienced pilot who rested through this landing instead of being in the cockpit? In aviation, who is responsible here?
I'm speculating here. I expect all four pilots to be initially charged with crimes by the South Korean government. The two nonflying pilots should have been in the cockpit jumpseats, backing up the flying pilots. We're dealing with a different culture; one shouldn't apply western logic in this case. I expect the South Korean government to view this as an act of negligence.

This was an accident. Obviously, the pilots did not purposely crash the plane.
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