Following the Crash of the Boeing plane en route from Jakarta, killing 189 passengers, the company have issued operational guidance to airlines as investigators continue to probe what happened to Lion Air Flight 610.
The plan had only flown 4 trips and was relatively new and state of the art. On Tuesday, the airline manufacturer said it had issued an ‘Operations Manual Bulletin’ advising airline operators how to address erroneous cockpit readings
It has not been confirmed if the guidelines were issued to operators of all Boeing aircraft or just those who fly 737 MAX 8 planes, the same model as Flight 610.
The directive points operators ‘to existing flight crew procedures to address circumstances where there is erroneous input from an AOA sensor,’ the statement said. ‘Whenever appropriate, Boeing, as part of its usual processes, issues bulletins or makes recommendations regarding the operation of its aircraft.’
An AOA, or angle of attack, sensor is a vane that sits outside of the aircraft and gives pilots a visual reading of the plane’s angle of attack — or ‘the angle between the oncoming air or relative wind and a reference line on the airplane or wing,’ according to Boeing.
‘It is very important because it tells them if the plane is flying at too high angle of attack, which can lead to an aerodynamic wing stall (loss of lift),’ said aviation analyst and editor-in-chief of Airlineratings.com, Geoffrey Thomas.
On Tuesday, Indonesian investigators found that the Lion Air flight had a malfunctioning airspeed indicator for its last four flights — and, crucially, at the time of the crash, according to Tjahjono.
Boeing confirmed that the Indonesian National Transportation Safety Committee had ‘indicated that Lion Air flight 610 experienced erroneous input from one of its AOA (angle of attack) sensors.’
However, preliminary investigation shows the plane did not explode in the air and was in good condition until the moment of its crash.
Boeing is involved in the ongoing investigation with the Indonesian National Transportation Safety Committee and other government authorities into the Lion Air crash and ‘continues to cooperate fully and provide technical assistance.’