What really caused the Ethiopian Airlines Crash?

Disclaimer: This article includes news coverage up until 25th March 2019. Further updates in the investigation will render this article subject to change.

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Ethiopian Airlines Flight ET302 claimed the lives of all 157 passengers after a fatal crash on 10 March 2019. The flight was a mere 6 minutes into its journey before complications arose, leading to its tragic crash near Addis Ababa.

Among the 157 fatalities, 19 United Nations members lost their lives on the morning of 10 March 2019. Thorough investigations were conducted on 12 March 2019 in an effort to recover vital information sources such as the aircraft’s black box. Forensic investigators, together with Ethiopian Airlines’ employees combed through the debris of the crash site, guarding themselves with surgical masks and white forensic suits. The aircraft was reduced to several broken pieces, however, after hours of searching, the black box was ultimately recovered. The recordings that were recovered from the black box revealed pertinent information relating to the crash. This information is currently being analysed for details regarding the flight pattern, distress signals and software malfunctions.

The Kenya-bound plane is the second tragic crash involving the notorious Boeing 737 max 8 airplanes. The previous incident, involving the Indonesian Lion Air flight, occurred no less than five months prior to the Ethiopian Airlines crash. Thorough investigations into both flights revealed an unsettling number of similarities between the nature of the crash. In both instances, the pilots identified complications within the aircraft, requested an emergency landing, and tragically lost contact with ground control. Initial reporting alleged that the aircraft’s automatic control systems, specifically, the  Boeing’s Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS) were to blame for the deadly crash. The MCAS is an anti-stall software system that aims to prevent the aircraft from stalling during the flight. Senior officials close to the case have confirmed their belief that the MCAS was active during both the Ethiopian Airlines crash, as well as the Indonesian Airlines crash. Reports also called into question the capability of the aircraft’s crew, citing a lack of simulation training as a possible reason for their failure to shut down the MCAS software. However, these allegations were refuted in recent reports by a direct statement from the CEO of Ethiopian Airlines, Tewolde GebreMariam. GebreMariam, who has publicly criticised Boeing’s lack of transparency regarding changes in the operation of the MCAS software, expressed his frustrations regarding the questioning of his crew. GebreMariam insists that all Ethiopian Airlines crew are fully prepared and adequately trained to handle crisis situations. GebreMariam also referred to the crew’s intensive simulation training, ultimately holding Boeing responsible for their inability to inform crew of the MCAS’ latest operational changes. GebreMariam’s reference to MCAS’ involvement emphasises the role that Boeing’s anti-stalling software played in the crash. After the Indonesian Airlines crash, Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg publicly admitted that the company should have provided full disclosure regarding the operation of the MCAS. Therefore, while English and French investigators continue to analyse the flight data, it is evident that the recent alterations to the MCAS played a definitive role in both Boeing aircraft crashes.

The consecutive crashes involving the Boeing 737 max 8 aircrafts have resulted in the tarnished reputation of a once reputable manufacturer. Data analysis that was collected in the aftermath of the Ethiopian Airlines crash show a startling decrease in the company’s market value. With shares dropping between 5-13,5% since the crash, Boeing has suffered blows to both its reputation as well as its financial state, with reports indicating that the company has lost billions of dollars already.

News of the second fatal crash in five short months caused widespread panic among customers, as well as the airlines carrying Boeing 737 max 8 aircrafts in their fleet. The Ethiopian Airlines crash triggered international outrage, resulting in the grounding of Boeing 737 aircrafts in countries all over the world. The United Kingdom, Australia and China are a few of the countries who have banned the departure and arrival of Boeing 737 aircrafts on their land. The international protest against Boeing’s frequent malfunctions, together with the lack of transparency provided by the company, has resulted in many people refusing to travel aboard the specific aircraft. In the days following the crash, many airlines provided passengers with the option to be refunded, should their plane be identified as a Boeing 737.

Boeing’s CEO, Dennis Muilenburg, made a statement offering condolences to the families of the victims as well as to Ethiopian Airlines. Muilenburg acknowledged Boeing’s failure to fully disclose information, while simultaneously revealing the company’s plan to release an updated software system in the near future. The software system will be updated in accordance with the investigation’s findings. The company has also assured the public that detail and care will be applied during the update process, so as to not create additional complications in the aircraft’s software. Boeing have yet to announce an estimated date regarding the release of the updated software, however, passengers and airlines can rest assured in the knowledge that all Boeing 737 max aircrafts will remain grounded during the construction process.

On behalf of all South Africans, I would like to extend our deepest condolences to the families of the victims. We will continue to keep you in our thoughts and prayers, while actively lobbying for increased transparency. 

Copyright

Priyanka Govender © 2019.

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5 Podcasts That Don’t Suck

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Even though Podcasts have been around since forever, I was never really inclined to invest my time in them. Perhaps I never found a podcaster that piqued my interest or spoke about topics that I could relate to. But thankfully, I decided to give podcasts a second chance, and I’ve been laughing my way through traffic ever since.

 

After some thorough research, I managed to round up 5 podcasts that are so great, you’ll wonder why you never listened to them before.

 

1. “Views” with David Dobrik and Jason Nash

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Warning: Do not listen to this podcast in public because you will most definitely look like a lunatic, laughing maniacally to yourself.

Anything that features the comedic brilliance of David Dobrik and Jason Nash is guaranteed to induce bouts of laughter. So its no surprise that the duo’s podcast, “Views” which airs every Thursday night, sits comfortably at the top of the comedy charts on Spotify.

David Dobrik is a 22 year old YouTube sensation with an impressive collection of vlogs under his belt. Together with fellow 45 year old vlogger Jason Nash, these two have successfully produced hours of A-grade banter for listeners to enjoy.

“Views” allows fans of Dobrik to delve deeper into the makings of this internet sensation. The unscripted story telling and personal anecdotes that they share ultimately humanise the larger than life character that is David Dobrik. With Nash as comedic support, the podcast is reminiscent of a group of friends joking around and poking fun at one another.

Thousands have compared David Dobrik’s vlog squad to the 90s sitcom “F.R.I.E.N.D.S” and the Views Podcast is further proof of this. Listening to Dobrik and Nash retell stories of risque adventures and crazy romances, listeners will be transported from their traffic-filled commute to the cosy familiarity of Central Perk coffee house.

 

2. Modern Love with WBUR and the New York Times

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Where do I even begin?!

Modern Love is a popular New York Times column wherein readers submit their tales of love, loss and matters of the heart. These stories were expertly transformed into an audio experience through the creation of the Modern Love Podcast which is available on Spotify.

Hosted by the calming voice of Meghna Chakrabarti, Modern Love allows listeners to immerse themselves in the authentic human experience.

The stories are brought to life by Hollywood favourites such as Shameless star Emmy Rossum, Titanic’s Kate Winslet, Love and Other Drugs star Jake Gyllenhaal.

Each episode, which is approximately an hour long, delves deep within the intricacies of 21st century love. The concept of dating is broken down as it pertains to modern romantics. Heartache is explained through the lens of people who never fully achieve closure as a result of social media. Each story is packed with emotion, humour and poignant relatability across various age groups.

You will cry either from laughter or resonance, but trust me, you will cry. So keep the tissues on hand and enjoy a ride on this rollercoaster of human emotion.

 

3. I’m Sorry Dad with Ry Doon and Brandon Calvillo

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Brought to you by the hilariously self-dubbed “I’m Sorry Dad Boys”, this comedy podcast is a laugh a minute.

Hosted by film-maker Brandon Calvillo and stand up comedian Ryan Doon, the weekly podcast is a series of hysterical anecdotes and expert story telling by some of YouTube’s most underrated creators.

Fair warning, the podcast is not for the faint-hearted, nor is it technically appropriate for listeners under the age of 16. But semantics aside, this podcast is 100% without a doubt hilarious. Crude sexual innuendos, relatable meme culture, and stories that explore millennial nuances, this podcast is packed with equal parts lad-humour and a healthy dose of realism, gender equality and intelligent discussions.

Calvillo and Doon are often joined by fellow comedians such Jason Nash and Alex Ernst whose personal experiences also add to the overall humour of the podcast.

You can catch these guys every week on Spotify! Make sure to listen closely for details about upcoming comedy shows.

 

4. Not Too Deep with Grace Helbig

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How can you not love Grace Helbig? The YouTube star has combined her love of story telling with her comedic genius in order to bring us this unique, fun and relatable take on modern culture.

Her podcast boasts a rotating cast of famous names such as Liza Koshy, Girl Boss Sophia Amuruso, Drake and Josh star Josh Peck etc.

As the name suggests, the overall message of the show is that the opinions shared should not be taken too seriously. It is light hearted comedy paired with funny personal experiences and commentary on millennial culture.

Intended solely to make her listeners laugh, Grace Helbig does a fantastic job of interviewing household names and bringing out the very best of the entertainment industry.

 

5. Congratulations with Chris D’elia

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If you’re looking for brutal honesty, unscripted comedic genius and edgy satirical humour, look no further than Chris D’elia.

With new episodes available every Tuesday on Spotify, the “Congratulations” podcast hosted by comedy legend Chris D’elia will definitely bring about ab-inducing laughter.

The stand up comedian boasts a number of highly acclaimed comedy specials such as Netflix “Incorrigible” and “Man on Fire”. His podcast is not intended for younger audiences, so perhaps listen to this funny podcast during your work commute or at the gym.

Each episode, which is roughly an hour long, is filled with observational humour and personal anecdotes that the comedian experiences on a day to day basis. His signature style of edgy, risque humour pairs perfectly with his on the spot comedy sketches.

This podcast is definitely a winner for fans who enjoy Chris D’elia’s unique style of comedy.

-Pri

All text is subject to copyright (2018)

Images are not my own

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