Indonesia's report on Lion Air 737 Max crash recommends redesign, better training

Indonesian investigators told families of the victims that a mix of factors contributed to the crash. PHOTO: REUTERS

SINGAPORE (REUTERS) - Indonesia has recommended closer scrutiny of automated control systems, better design of flight deck alerts and accounting for a more diverse pilot population in the wake of a Boeing 737 Max crash, the Seattle Times reported.

The newspaper received an advance copy of a final report on the crash of a Lion Air jet that killed all 189 people on board on Oct 29, 2018.

Less than five months after the Lion Air accident, an Ethiopian Airlines 737 Max crashed, leading to a global grounding of the model and sparking a corporate crisis at Boeing, the world's biggest planemaker.

Indonesian investigators on Wednesday (Oct 23) told families of the victims that a mix of factors contributed to the crash, including mechanical and design issues and a lack of documentation about how systems would behave.

"Deficiencies" in the flight crew's communication and manual control of the aircraft contributed to the crash, as did alerts and distractions in the cockpit, according to slides presented to the families.

The final report said the first officer was unfamiliar with procedures and in training had shown issues with handling the aircraft, according to the Seattle Times.

It also found that a critical sensor providing data to an anti-stall system was faulty and that there were strong indications that it was not tested during installation by Lion Air maintenance staff, the newspaper reported.

In the report, Indonesian regulators recommended a redesign of an anti-stall system known as MCAS that automatically pushed the plane's nose down, leaving pilots fighting for control. Boeing has already said it would remake the system and provide more information about it in pilot manuals.

The final report will be released publicly on Friday.

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