Report: Co-pilot moved seat, sent jetliner plummeting
November 30th, 2010
03:31 PM ET

Report: Co-pilot moved seat, sent jetliner plummeting

The co-pilot of an Air India Express 737 sent the jetliner into a terrifying 7,000-foot plunge in May when he accidentally hit the control column while adjusting his seat, investigators report.

According to the report from India’s Directorate General of Civil Aviation, the co-pilot panicked and was unable to execute the proper procedures as the jetliner dropped from 37,000 feet at a 26-degree angle. The plane and its 113 passengers were saved when the pilot, who’d gone on a bathroom break, used an emergency code to get into the locked cockpit, jumped back into his seat and grabbed the controls to bring the plummeting plane out of its dive.

The aircraft would have broken apart if the descent had continued, the aviation agency report said. The aircraft was not damaged and no one was injured, the report said.

After the pilot, 39, regained control of the plane, he told passengers, who were in the middle of a meal when the jet plunged, that the plane had “went through an air pocket and that is why there was a rapid descent,” according to the report.

The aviation agency report concluded that the 25-year-old co-pilot had not been trained in the specific scenario the jet encountered and “probably had no clue to tackle this kind of emergency.”

Neither the pilot nor co-pilot were named in the report.

The Air India Express flight was en route from Dubai to Pune, India, on May 25 when the incident occurred.

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Filed under: Air travel • India • Plane emergency landing • Travel
soundoff (962 Responses)
  1. DisgruntledGrrl

    I've been looking for this story for almost 2 weeks. Now I read it happened "May 25". What the heck?

    December 28, 2010 at 7:52 am | Report abuse | Reply
  2. plaitinen

    You can take the people out of the third world but you can't take the third world out of the people.

    December 29, 2010 at 11:16 am | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Marynancy

    I went to shift from second to third the other morning and grabbed the soda bottle which was in the cupholder next to the shifter.

    January 4, 2011 at 2:31 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Tyrone

    This article will help the internet viewers for setting up new blog or even a blog from start to end.

    May 31, 2013 at 4:05 am | Report abuse | Reply
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