Investigators are looking at pilot error or mechanical failure as possible causes of a FlyDubai flight’s deadly crash in Russia, a representative from Russia’s Investigative Committee said in a briefing today.
Investigators suggested earlier that bad weather could’ve be the primary cause, but now they say that, if the crash wasn’t caused by a mechanical failure, it may have been caused by the pilot not handling the weather conditions properly.
“Two theories of the plane crash are being explored… The first one is pilot error in acting in difficult meteorological conditions, and the second is mechanical failure,” said Oksana Kovrizhnaya, a spokesperson for the Investigative Committee’s Southern Transport Investigative Department.
Kovrizhnaya also said that wind speed at the time of the crash was reaching 18 meters per second, which could have caused the pilot error.
According to ABC News aviation consultant Col. Stephen Ganyard, “Winds in and of themselves should not bring an airplane down. So perhaps it was a contributing factor.”
“I think something else went wrong,” Ganyard said. “Perhaps pilot disorientation.”
“Perhaps this pilot was looking out the window trying to find the airport at night. And when you have night, and you’ve lost horizon, it’s not hard to get visually disoriented and lose track of which way is up,” he said.
“I think we’re going to find something that indicates that this was human error,” Ganyard said