Intermediate Report on Air France Flight 447 Crash

Today, the French Bureau of Enquiry and Analysis for Civil Aviation Safety (BEA) has released a first intermediate investigation report on the Air France flight 447 crash from June 1.

The report reveals that the plane (Airbus A330-200 F-GZCP / MSN: 660) was not destroyed in flight and had likely struck the surface of the water in a straight line, with a high rate vertical acceleration.

The airplane had taken off from Rio de Janeiro without any known technical problems, except on one of the three radio handling panels. No problems were indicated by the crew to Air France or during contacts with the Brazilian controllers. No distress messages were received by the control centres or by other airplanes. The last radio exchange between the crew and Brazilian ATC occurred at 1 h 35 min 15 s. The airplane then arrived at the edge of radar range of the Brazilian control centres. At 2 h 01, the crew tried, without success for the third time, to connect to the Dakar ATC ADS-C system. Up to the last automatic position point, received at 2 h 10 min 35 s, the flight had followed the route indicated in the flight plan.

The meteorological situation was typical of that encountered in the month of June in the inter-tropical convergence zone. There were powerful cumulonimbus clusters on the route of AF447. Some of them could have been the centre of some notable turbulence. Several airplanes that were flying before and after AF 447, at about the same altitude, altered their routes in order to avoid cloud masses.

Air France Flight AF447 Weather Radar Map

Twenty-four automatic maintenance messages were received between 2 h 10 and 2 h 15 via the ACARS system. These messages show inconsistency between the measured speeds as well as the associated consequences. Before 2 h 10, no maintenance messages had been received from AF 447, with the exception of two messages relating to the configuration of the toilets.
The last ACARS message was received towards 2 h 14 min 28 s.

ACARS messages:
FLR = Fault
WRN = Cockpit Warning

  • 02:10:10 – .1/WRN/WN0906010210 221002006AUTO FLT AP OFF

    Autopilot disconnection other than by pressing the push-button provided for that purpose on the control sticks

  • 02:10:16 – .1/WRN/WN0906010210 226201006AUTO FLT REAC W/S DET FAULT

    Unavailability of the reaction to wind shear detection function

  • 02:10:23 – .1/WRN/WN0906010210 279100506F/CTL ALTN LAW

    Switching to alternate flight control law

  • 02:10:29 – .1/WRN/WN0906010210 228300206FLAG ON CAPT PFD SPD LIMIT
    02:10:41 – .1/WRN/WN0906010210 228301206FLAG ON F/O PFD SPD LIMIT

    Disappearance of the display of the characteristic speeds (in particular VLS and green dot) on the Captain and First Officer PFDs, with display of the SPD LIM flag at the bottom of the speed scales due to unavailability of the FMGEC’s characteristic speed calculation function.

  • 02:10:47 – .1/WRN/WN0906010210 223002506AUTO FLT A/THR OFF

    Disconnection of the auto-thrust other than by pressing the button provided for that purpose on the throttle control levers (instinctive disconnect) or that the throttle control levers were moved to the idle notch.

  • 02:10:54 – .1/WRN/WN0906010210 344300506NAV TCAS FAULT

    TCAS is inoperative

  • 02:11:00 – .1/WRN/WN0906010210 228300106FLAG ON CAPT PFD FD
    02:11:15 – .1/WRN/WN0906010210 228301106FLAG ON F/O PFD FD

    Disappearance of the Flight Director on the Primary Flight Displays, Captain and First Officer sides, and display of the red FD flag

  • 02:11:21 – .1/WRN/WN0906010210 272302006F/CTL RUD TRV LIM FAULT

    Unavailability of the rudder deflection limitation calculation function. The limitation value remains frozen at the current value at the time of the failure (until the slats extension command is given).

  • 02:11:49 – .1/FLR/FR0906010210 34111506EFCS2 1,EFCS1,AFS,,,,,PROBE-PITOT
    1X2 / 2X3 / 1X3 (9DA),HARD
    02:11:55 – .1/FLR/FR0906010210 27933406EFCS1 X2,EFCS2X,,,,,,FCPC2 (2CE2)

    Detection of different speed by pitot probes. Detection of decreasing speed of more than 30 kt in one second of the “polled” speed value.

    Airbus A330 Pitot Probes

  • 02:12:10 – .1/WRN/WN0906010211 341200106FLAG ON CAPT PFD FPV
    02:12:16 – .1/WRN/WN0906010211 341201106FLAG ON F/O PFD FPV

    Disappearance of the Flight Path Vector (bird) on the PFDs (Primary Flight Displays), Captain and First Officer sides, and display of the red FPV (Flight Path Vector) flag

  • 02:12:51 – .1/WRN/WN0906010212 341040006NAV ADR DISAGREE

    The Electronic Flight Control Systems have rejected an Air Data Reference, and then identified an inconsistency between the two remaining Air Data References on one of the monitored parameters.

  • 02:13:08 – .1/FLR/FR0906010211 34220006ISIS 1,,,,,,,ISIS(22FN-10FC) SPEED OR MACH FUNCTION,HARD

    Internal failure at the level of the Calibrated Airspeed or Mach elaboration function. The Calibrated Airspeed or Mach values are outside certain limits.

  • 02:13:14 – .1/FLR/FR0906010211 34123406IR2 1,EFCS1X,IR1,IR3,,,,ADIRU2(1FP2),HARD

    Unexplained fault

  • 02:13:45 – .1/WRN/WN0906010213 279002506F/CTL PRIM 1 FAULT
    02:13:51 – .1/WRN/WN0906010213 279004006F/CTL SEC 1 FAULT

    Flight Control Primary Computer 1 and Flight Control Secondary Computer 1 have stopped functioning.

  • 02:14:20 – .1/FLR/FR0906010213 22833406AFS1,,,,,,,FMGEC1(1CA1),INTERMITTENT

    Unexplained fault detected for less than 2.5 seconds

  • 02:14:26 – .1/WRN/WN0906010214 213100206ADVISORY CABIN VERTICAL SPEED

    A cabin altitude variation greater than 1,800 ft/min for five seconds.

Investigation of the recovered tail fin showed that the frames broke during a forward motion with a slight twisting component towards the left. A recovered galley was not very distorted. Baskets and racks were compressed in the lower part of both galley carts. The distortions observed in the metal vertical reinforcements of a toilet door showed evidence of great compressive forces. Fragments of the walls of the flight crew rest area were crumpled and those of the ceiling were deformed downwards. The floor was curved under the effect of a strong upward pressure from below. The connecting brackets between the floor and the walls were bent

The agency also published further in-depth details about the weather at time of the crash, information about pitot probes, location of wreckage, as well as the general condition of the plane prior to the accident.
Also included in this investigation report is the full ATC transcript as well as some new photos of recovered wreckage.

Intermediate Investigation Report (English) – Does NOT include several additional information such as ATC transcript and weather details!:

Intermediate Investigation Report (French) – Complete report including ATC transcript and weather!:

Source & Images: Bureau of Enquiry and Analysis for Civil Aviation Safety (BEA)

More New Photos of AF447 Wreckage
New Photos Of AF447 Wreckage
Photos – AF447 Wreckage
Photos – AF447 Tail Recovered from Atlantic Ocean

One thought on “Intermediate Report on Air France Flight 447 Crash”

  1. The radio show of Michael Savage reported that five days before the crash, AIR FRANCE RECEIVED A BOMB THREAT!!

    What about what was reported in the media about a week latter THAT TWO OF THE PASSENGERS ON THE PLANE WERE ON THE LISTS OF WANTED TERRORISTS!!

    Will this be another government cover up like what happened with TWA Flight 800 and with the bombing of the Federal Building in Oklahoma City in the mid 1990’s????

    Flight 800: In the early evening of July 17th, 1996, TWA flight 800: New York to Paris, left JFK International Airport with 230 people. About 11 minutes latter, the plane exploded into a gigantic fireball.

    Nearly 200 people, both on the ground and pilots in the air, claimed seeing a bright red streak of a rocket shooting toward the plane. Also, the local Air Traffic Control reported that its radar screen showed a blip that hit with the (screen mark of the) plane right before the blow up.

    There were thus theories of terrorism, but the most plausible theory is that this was a tragic error of “friendly fire”: At that time, the US military had been conducting complicated tests in that area of the Long Island Coast, and a malfunction caused the test rocket to fire into the TWA plane instead of the set dummy target.

    The government negated all of this. Interviewed witnesses were said to be drunk or stupid and were told: “No, you really didn’t see a missile!” The Air Traffic radar report was quickly retracted. The official explanation given for the disaster was that it was just a “mechanical problem” of an empty fuel tank malfunction!

    Oklahoma Bombing: At 9:02 in the morning of April 19, 1995, a massive truck bomb exploded at the entrance of the Federal Building in downtown Oklahoma City, ripping off the front of the entire structure and brutally massacring 168 people. Over 20 people saw TWO men setting the bomb, one of whom was identified as Hussain al-Hussaini, who was part of Saddam Hussein’s elite forces.

    (Remember the anti-Iraq War propaganda, over and over and over again: “Saddam Hussein had nothing to do with 9/11! Saddam Hussein had nothing to do with 9/11! Saddam Hussein had nothing to do with9/11!” Well, whatever he did or did not do with 9/11, it sure looks like he DID have a quite a lot to do with the Oklahoma City Bombing!)

    The FBI thus put out search & arrest bulletins for “John Does 1 & 2 — MIDDLE EASTERN MALE SUSPECT(S).”

    These bulletins though, were quickly withdrawn. Soon, a Mr. Timothy McVegh was arrested and was declared to be John Doe 1. It was further declared that there had never been a John Doe 2! A Mr. Terry Nichols was also arrested as being McVegh’s assistant. McVegh and Nichols were American militia people who vehemently hate the federal government. Thus the media purported the danger posed by these fanatic right wing groups.

    Under heavy media coverage that loudly trumpeted his demonization, Mr. McVegh was tried, convicted, condemned to death, and in 2001, quickly executed. Mr. Nichols was given life in jail.