Pilot error has been identified as the likely cause of the crash of Air France flight AF447, which came down over the Atlantic Ocean in 2009 with the loss of all 228 people on board.
Initial investigations revealed faulty air speed monitors had played a role in the crash, but a new report suggests the two pilots on board could have saved the situation.
“The situation was salvageable,” said Jean-Paul Troadec, director of the Bureau of Investigations & Analysis air accident investigator team.
The Airbus 330 jet crashed in the Atlantic on June 1st, 2009 en route from Rio de Janeiro to Paris.
The preliminary report – which stopped short of definitive conclusions - called for changes to pilot training procedures aimed at helping crews respond appropriately when they run into trouble at high altitudes.
The findings were immediately rejected by Air France.
Air France and aircraft manufacturer Airbus face manslaughter charges.
The report also confirmed previous findings that the plane’s airspeed sensors were blocked by ice at cruising altitude.
This caused the autopilot to shut down around four hours into the flight.