China denies online ‘rumors’ blaming co-pilot for 132 plane crashes

The cause of China’s recent passenger plane crash, in which 132 people were killed, remains under investigation, a Chinese aviation official said, dismissing online speculation that the co-pilot may be responsible for the tragic crash.

The Chinese passenger plane crashed in southern Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region on March 21, killing all 132 people on board, including the nine crew members. China Eastern Airlines’ Boeing 737-800 aircraft, which flew from Kunming to Guangzhou, dived into the mountains of Tengxian County in Wuzhou City.

Rumors have circulated online that the co-pilot may be “responsible” for the crash, attributing it to the data of black boxes, with some believing that the CAAC flight crew will be required to undergo mental health oversight, the state-run Global Times reports.

China’s civil aviation regulator, the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC), refutes such rumors about the co-pilot’s involvement in the China Eastern Flight MU5375 crash, saying the crash is still under investigation, and no conclusions have been drawn. the cause and nature of the accident yet.

The “rumors”, alleging that they come from some public safety departments are misleading, would undermine public confidence in the ongoing investigation, and could represent a violation of the law, said Wu Shijie, a CAAC official told the official media on Monday.

“We will do our best to find the cause of the accident as soon as possible and release the relevant information according to the law and procedures,” he said.

Wu said the accident had an impact on the well-being of workers in frontline civil aviation, and some employees suffered from emotional stress, especially younger workers.

The CAAC attaches great importance to the mental well-being of aviation workers and called on airlines to take measures to support pilots, flight attendants and safety officers in managing their psychological pressures.

Earlier this month, a working group sent by the US National Transportation Safety Board to China came to help investigate the crash.
China Eastern Airlines aircraft.

The seven-member panel, consisting of authorized representatives and technical advisers, will participate in the CAAC survey.

Airline safety management is focused on the mental state and health of all aircrew, including pilots, and it is an important function of the regulation, CAAC said.

The aviation industry recently held a two-week-long safety review, stating that it had addressed a number of safety hazards, following the fatal crash of Flight MU5375, in which all 132 people on board were killed, the Global Times reported.

Concrete measures need to be taken to strengthen the investigation of hidden dangers regarding aircraft maintenance, flight water conditions, personnel qualifications and technical capabilities, said the Chinese civil aviation regulator.

China’s aviation officials said there had been no weather or other dangers due to the flight on its route. China Eastern said the plane, less than seven years old, had also passed all prior checks.

There were three pilots, China Eastern officials said. The captain had 6,709 hours of flying experience, and the first and second officers had 31,769 hours and 556 hours, respectively.

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