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Both engines of ill-fated plane failed before crash: official

2015/02/06 16:30:50

Taipei, Feb. 6 (CNA) Data from the two black boxes retrieved from a TransAsia Airways plane that crashed into a river in Taipei showed that both of the turboprop aircraft's engines failed before the crash, the Aviation Safety Council (ASC, 飛航安全委員會) said Friday.

Neither engine had any power during the last minute and 7 seconds before the aircraft plunged into the Keelung River, ASC Managing Director Wang Hsing-chung (王興中) said at a news conference in Taipei.

A warning first went off for engine No. 2 when the plane reached an altitude of about 1,200 feet, according to the flight data recorder, he said.

Forty-six seconds later, power to engine No. 1 was cut off and then turned back on a full 56 seconds after that, just six seconds before the plane hit the ground, Wang said in presenting the timeline of what happened.

He did not give any explanation for why engine No. 1 was turned off.

TransAsia Airways flight 235 crashed three minutes and 23 seconds after getting clearance at 10:51:13 to take off Wednesday morning from Songshan Airport in northern Taipei en route to Kinmen, the data showed.

Fifteen of the 58 people on board survived the accident while 35 have been confirmed dead and the other eight remain unaccounted for.

The ATR72-600 aircraft was less than a year old but had experienced engine problems before.

Representatives from the French Land Transport Accident Investigation Bureau, the Transportation Safety Board of Canada, the plane's manufacturer ATR and engine manufacturer Pratt & Whitney Canada in Taiwan to investigate the crash also attended the press conference.

(By Wang Shu-fen and Lilian Wu; click here for the latest on the crash)
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