Indonesia finds faults in two other jets
JAKARTA — Indonesia’s transport ministry said yesterday it had found "minor" faults in two other Boeing 737MAX 8 jets, including a cockpit indicator display problem which an analyst said may be similar to one reported in the crashed Lion Air Jet.
The ministry is inspecting 10 of the newly released jets owned by Lion and flagship carrier Garuda, as authorities analyse data from a recovered black box that may help explain why flight JT 610 plummeted into the Java Sea, killing 189 people on Monday.
Few details were released, but the ministry said it had looked over half a dozen jets so far and discovered that one had a problem linked to its cockpit display while another had a glitch in a jet stabilisation system.
Both Lion-owned planes required new components, it said.
Aviation analyst Dudi Sudibyo said the cockpit display issue could include a speed-and-altitude glitch reported in the doomed jet.
“They can be minor issues but they have to be fixed,” he added.
“With airplanes, even if there is a single, tiny fault it should not fly.”
The inspection comes as questions swirl about why a plane that had gone into service just months ago crashed into the sea minutes after takeoff.
The single-aisle jet, en route from Jakarta to Pangkal Pinang city, is one of the world’s newest and most advanced commercial passenger planes.
Budget carrier Lion Air’s admission that the doomed jet had a technical issue on a previous flight - as well its abrupt fatal dive - have raised questions about whether it had mechanical faults specific to the new model.
Indonesia’s National Transportation Safety Committee said it was interviewing people who flew on the plane the day before the fatal crash.
Earlier yesterday, seats, wheels and other parts of the crashed jet were hauled from the depths off Indonesia’s north coast as search teams scoured the seabed for the fuselage.
Divers were searching a relatively shallow area about 25-35 metres deep, but have been finding fewer body parts than earlier in the week, he added. — AFP