Experienced Crew Struggled With Instrument Flight After Boeing 737 Lost Autopilots...
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September 8, 2020 - by David Kaminski-Morrow for www.flightglobal.com
Spanish investigators have detailed an unusual incident in which a Boeing 737-500 crew struggled to control the aircraft after the autopilots failed, even though all the instruments needed to operate the flight remained fully functional.
Operated by Lithuanian carrier Klasjet, the aircraft had departed Madrid Barajas for Kaunas on 5 April last year, with the captain's autopilot inoperative – a situation permitted under minimum equipment list regulations – but the first officer's autopilot also failed some 2min after take-off.
Investigators detailed the meandering flightpath of the Boeing 737 after its autopilot failureSource: CIAIAC
Spanish investigation authority CIAIAC stresses that the loss of the autopilots "did not prevent proceeding with the flight in instrument conditions", because all the instruments required to conduct the service "were available to the crew at all times".
These included the attitude indicator, altimeter, rate-of-climb indicator, compass, bank indicator, engine instruments and other systems.
The inquiry also points out that the cockpit crew comprised instrument-rated pilots with "considerable" experience – a captain with over 4,300h on type, who also served as an instructor, while...
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