Lessons from a Fatal Crash

March 28, 2012


Air France Flight 447/Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Aviation safety expert John Cox helped investigate the fatal crash of Air France flight 447 in 2009. More than 200 people were lost in that crash, considered one of the worst accident in French aviation history.  Researchers now believe a stall was caused by iced-over instruments and two copilots with no training in manual aircraft handling at high altitude. They tipped the nose of the plane up, causing it to lose lift and speed as it climbed, instead of down, which would have increased the speed and prevented a stall.

NOVA Interactive: Learn more about the aeronautic principles of Lift and Drag

NOVA: How Air Flight France 447 Could Have Been Saved
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