Air France ordered to compensate Flight 447 victims

29th Dec 2010
Air France ordered to compensate Flight 447 victims

A court in Rio de Janeiro has ordered Air France to pay $727,000 in compensation to relatives of a Brazilian family that died on Flight 447, the Rio-Paris flight that came down in the Atlantic in June 2009, killing all 228 people on board.

The court awarded the sum to the parents and grandparents of a 31-year-old Brazilian woman, Luciana Clarkson Seba, who was killed along with her husband and parents-in-law in the accident.

Crash investigators blamed the accident on faulty speed sensors on the Airbus A330-200.

Air France, through its insurers, has made compensation payments to the relatives of the passengers and crew, but continues to defend itself from litigation in Brazil.

On top of the damages for suffering, the Rio court ordered Air France to pay Clarkson Seba’s mother $3,000 dollars.


Aer Lingus learns lessons from Flight 447

In separate news, Aer Lingus captains flying Airbus A330 jets across the Atlantic have been warned not to put too much trust in their auto-pilots.

This follows research in the wake of the crash of Air France 447 in which three young Irish doctors lost their lives.

Data broadcast from the Airbus jet suggested the air speed probes were malfunctioning and that the auto-pilot had disconnected.

Airbus auto-pilots are designed to disconnect automatically if the probes - which tell the flight computer how fast the plane is travelling - give erroneous or contradictory readings.

The pilots will then resume manual control until the problem is sorted out, or until they can land safely.

However the European Air Safety Agency has since discovered a potentially unsafe condition where flight computers suggest reconnecting the autopilot if two of the aircraft’s three speed sensors give the same reading, even if it is false.

“We are aware of this and the associated amendment has been distributed to flight crew,” an Aer Lingus spokeswoman said.


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