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OUT OF MIND » TRUTH IN CONSPIRACY THEORIES? » MISSING & CRASHED PLANES » AirAsia Crash: Leading Theories About What Caused Plane to Go Down

AirAsia Crash: Leading Theories About What Caused Plane to Go Down

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AirAsia Crash: Leading Theories About What Caused Plane to Go Down
Dec 30, 2014, 1:33 PM ET
By MEGHAN KENEALLY


More ABC News Videos | ABC World News

Home > International
AirAsia Crash: Leading Theories About What Caused Plane to Go Down
Dec 30, 2014, 1:33 PM ET
By MEGHAN KENEALLY
Meghan Keneally More from Meghan »
Digital Reporter


AirAsia Crash: Leading Theories About What Caused Plane to Go Down Gty_airasia_debris_press_conference_wy_141230_1_16x9_992

More AirAsia Victims Found as Bad Weather Slows Recovery Effort
Next Video Early Clues Might Be Found in AirAsia Wreckage
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The prospect that a small explosion caused AirAsia flight QZ8501 to crash is one theory being considered to explain the plane crash, an aviation expert told ABC News.
John Nance, a former Air Force pilot and ABC News consultant, says that a bomb may have gone off inside the aircraft which would explain why it abruptly went off radar screens and sent no distress signals in the moments before it crashed into the Java Sea on Sunday with 162 people on board.
"Maybe one that wasn't strong enough to blow the airplane into pieces at altitude, but maybe one that blew the control cables from the hydraulics," Nance told ABC News.
The plane is thought to be largely intact because search and rescue workers believe they see the shadow of a plane in the relatively shallow water.
Another possible explanation is that the AirAsia flight QZ8501 suffered a similar disaster that doomed an Air France crash in 2009 as it traveled from Rio de Janeiro to Paris and crashed in the Atlantic Ocean .

What the Wreckage of AirAsia Flight QZ 8501 Can Tell Us


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In that situation, in a similar model AirBus plane, air speed measurement tools called Pitot tubes froze, causing the pilot to believe that they were going at a much faster pace than they actually were. Nance said he believes it is possible that the AirAsia plane inadvertently stalled, but suspects the stall could have been caused by trying to avoid a storm rather than having the Pitot tubes failing.

AirAsia Crash: Leading Theories About What Caused Plane to Go Down Gty_airasia_debris_2_wy_141230_4x3_992
Bay Ismoyo/AFP/Getty Images
PHOTO: This aerial view shows floating debris spotted in the same area of the Java Sea as other items being investigated by Indonesian authorities as possible objects from missing AirAsia flight QZ8501, Dec. 30, 2014.

The pilot could have inadvertently stalled the plane by abruptly trying to increase his altitude despite ground control's refusal of his request to fly higher, Nance said. But a stall while trying to climb would not explain the abrupt end of the plane's radar signal, he noted.
"It's just sitting there and coming down out of the sky at an unsurvivable speed," Nance said of the stall theory.
Steve Ganyard, a former Marine Corps fighter pilot and ABC News consultant, said that if the plane is largely intact that could point to a slower crash caused by a stall, though he did not elaborate on the possible reasons for a stall.
"If there is in fact a shadow that looks like an airplane underwater, it would suggest that the airplane came down fairly slowly," Ganyard said on "Good Morning America ." "Maybe it was in a stall, mushing to the ground at maybe 100, 150 mph. It did not hit at a very high rate of speed, which would have dispersed lots of debris all over and we wouldn't see that shadow."

AirAsia Crash: Leading Theories About What Caused Plane to Go Down Ap_airasia_luggage_debris_4_wy_141230_4x3_992
Dewi Nurcahyani/AP Photo
PHOTO: Indonesian Air Force officials show AirAsia Flight 8501 debris during a press conference at the airbase in Pangkalan Bun, Central Borneo, Indonesia, Dec. 30, 2014.

The experts, however, point out that the Air France stall occurred when it was dark out, meaning that the pilot would not have been able to see the horizon line, which would have alerted the pilots that the plane's nose was tipping up. Sunday's AirAsia flight took place in the morning at an hour when sunlight would have been visible over the horizon, meaning that the pilots should have been able to see that problem and have enough time to fix it.


Thanks to: http://abcnews.go.com



  

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