Pilot error blamed for Air France crash

A combination of pilot error, inadequate training and technical problems have been identified as the cause of a mid-Atlantic Air France crash that killed 228 people.

A report by investigators into the Rio de Janeiro-Paris Airbus A330 crash has called for improved pilot training and cockpit design among 25 recommendations to prevent a repeat of the disaster.

France’s investigation authority confirmed earlier findings that the crew had mishandled its response to the loss of speed readings from faulty sensors that became iced up in turbulent conditions over the south Atlantic on June 1, 2009.

The aircraft plunged for four minutes in darkness in an aerodynamic stall while pilots failed to react to repeated stall alarms, according to flight recorders recovered two years after the crash.

Investigation body director Jean-Paul Troadec said: “This accident results from an airplane being taken out of its normal operating environment by a crew that had not understood the situation.”

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