The recent Air India plane crash in Kerala’s Kozhikode on Friday is one of the deadliest flight crashes India has seen of late. But the country has seen some Air India misfortunes in the past too. Let’s take a look at some of the most disastrous Air India plane crashes in history.
Indian Airlines Flight 605 in February 1990
On 14th February 1990, Indian Airlines flight 605 which was a passenger Airbus A320-231 registered as VT-EPN, was scheduled to fly from Mumbai to Bengaluru. The operators, while attempting to land the aircraft at Bengaluru airport, hit a golf course.
The accident killed around 92 people in the plane. Fifty-four survived the mishap.
After the investigation, it was reported that the apparent cause of the accident was that the pilots selected ‘open descent or flight idle’ control instead of ‘glideslope capture’. This selection led the plane sink far below instead of landing on right path.
The report also stated that the crew was not aware of the situation they were facing after selecting the descent. The investigation team had requested the government to assess the condition of airport to prevent further fatal accidents. This accident led Indian Commercial Pilot Association to criticize the flaws that existed in the Airbus A320. They said the operating systems in those aircraft were confusing, and the crew struggled to avert the crash.
Air India Express Flight IX 812 in May 2010
Air India Express Flight 812, a Boeing 800-737 passenger jet, crashed at Mangalore airport on May 22nd 2010, on its way from Dubai.
As per the investigations conducted by Air Marshal Bhushan Nilkanth Gokhale, former vice chief of Air Staff, Government of India, it was seen that the captain continued an unstabilized approach in spite of receiving calls from the department to go around and the ignorance of which resulted the plane to overshoot the runway path. The plane fell down in the hillside emitting flames as a result of burst.
This mishap was seen as the first ever fatal accident which involved Air India Express. Among 160 passengers who traveled in the flight, 158 were killed surviving only two among the passengers with six crew members. With 158 victims of the accident, Air Express 812 was the second deadliest accident involving the next generation Boeing 737 aircraft and reported as the third worst airplane accident in India.
Air India Express flight IX 1344 in August 2020
On Friday 8th august 2020, Air India Express flight which was operated by Boeing 737 aircraft from Dubai airport to Calicut overran the runway at Karipur airport at Kozhikode and crashed.
Reports state that there were 184 passengers along with two pilots and five crew members on the aircraft. Eighteen people, including Deepak Sathe, the pilot-in-command and a former wing commander of Indian Air force (IAF), and the co-pilot Akhilesh Sharma, succumbed to their injuries.
According to the latest reports the crash occurred due to heavy rains. As the runway was wet, the flight operators were unable to control the speed of the aircraft.
A government official said: “Visibility was 2000m in light rain, which might have obstructed the crew. The aircraft broke into two pieces. There will be a thorough investigation.”
These were some of the deadly Air India plane crashes in the history of Indian aviation.