Emirates airline accident report rules out mechanical issues

There were no mechanical issues before the EK521 accident, according to a statement by the United Arab Emirates' General Civil Aviation Authority

Staff Report
12:42 August 6, 2017

Dubai: A year after the accident involving an Emirates flight at the Dubai International Airport, UAE investigators have found out that there were no mechanical problems leading up to the event.

An interim statement issued on Sunday by the UAE’s General Civil Aviation Authority one year on said “there were no aircraft systems or engine abnormalities up to the time of the accident.”

Flight EK521: Landing gear issues not confirmed

Emirates jet touched down before aborting landing

Giving a brief account of the progress of the investigation, the statement said investigators are “working to determine and analyse the human performance factors that influence flight crew actions”.

The August 3 accident had destroyed the Boeing 777-300 coming from Thiruvananthapuram, the capital of the south Indian state of Kerala, but claimed no lives among the 300 passengers and crew. A firefighter was killed in a subsequent explosion in a fuel tank of flight EK521.

“At approximately 0837:38 UTC, the aircraft impacted the runway during an attempted go-around at Dubai International Airport,” the statement said.

“The aircraft sustained substantial structural damage as a result of the impact and its movement along the runway and was eventually destroyed by fire. Twenty-one passengers, one flight crewmember, and four cabin crewmembers sustained minor injuries. Four cabin crewmembers sustained serious injuries. Approximately nine minutes after the aircraft came to rest, a firefighter was fatally injured as a result of the explosion of the centre wing fuel tank.”

“Regarding the operation of the flight, the investigation [team] is working to determine and analyse the human performance factors that influenced flight crew actions during the landing and attempted go-around. In addition, the investigation has reviewed and has identified safety enhancements related to the validity of weather information that was passed to the flight crew, and communication between air traffic control and the flight crew,” the report said.

“A large number of aircraft systems were tested with the assistance of the manufacturers and analysis of the data downloaded indicates that there were no aircraft systems or engine abnormalities up to the time of the accident,” the interim statement added.

In an email to Gulf News, an Emirates spokesperson said: “Our internal investigation is ongoing, which includes a thorough review of all training and operational processes and procedures. Emirates is awaiting the publication of the UAE AAIS Annex 13 final investigation report, at which time any safety directives will be implemented and any safety recommendations will be considered. We continue to extend our full co-operation to the investigators as they work towards the final report.”