Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

WEB NEWS

Trash collection goes high tech

Read more

WEB NEWS

Web users react to escalating violence in Gaza

Read more

FASHION

Paris, Haute Couture Fall/Winter 2014-2015.

Read more

REPORTERS

Exclusive: an unlikely victim of the 'War on Terror'

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

2014-07-11 21:47 AFRICA NEWS

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Finally, a good use for new app "Yo"

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 11 July 2014 (part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 11 July 2014

Read more

#THE 51%

Sweden: A Feminist's Paradise?

Read more

  • Major differences remain as deadline looms in Iran nuclear talks

    Read more

  • Germany vs Argentina - history and genius clash in World Cup final

    Read more

  • Israeli navy attacks Hamas base as tanks line up along Gaza border

    Read more

  • Germany’s Tony Martin wins ninth stage of Tour de France

    Read more

  • French military to extend Mali 'counterterrorism' operations into Sahel

    Read more

  • Boko Haram claims Nigeria attacks and supports Iraqi militants

    Read more

  • Paris’s Bastille Day fireworks ‘an homage to victims’ of WWI

    Read more

  • French court lifts mayor’s ban on Muslim hijab at beach

    Read more

  • Shells land in Russia as eastern Ukrainians flee fighting

    Read more

  • Rival Libyan militias exchange heavy fire at Tripoli airport

    Read more

  • Holland beat hosts Brazil 3-0 to finish third in World Cup

    Read more

  • Iraqi parliament fails to agree on new leadership

    Read more

  • Afghan presidential candidates agree to full vote audit, Kerry says

    Read more

  • Last of the Ramones, Tommy Ramone, dies aged 62

    Read more

  • Video: Outrage in wake of deadly Casablanca buildings collapse

    Read more

middle east - do not use

Airline's excellent safety record tarnished after storm crash

©

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2010-01-25

The tragic crash of the Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737 on Monday is all the more shocking for both the airline’s excellent safety record and the fact that the aeroplane was relatively new, an industry expert tells FRANCE 24.

Ethiopian Airlines, who lost a jet in a crash off the coast of Lebanon on Monday, is one of Africa's fastest growing airlines whose safety record has been “a beacon” for the rest of Africa.

The airliner, carrying 90 passengers and crew, plunged into the Mediterranean sea after take off from Beirut early on Monday during a fierce storm which is a likely cause for the accident.

"Bad weather was apparently the cause of the crash," Lebanese Defence Minister Elias Murr told reporters. "We have ruled out foul play so far," he added, echoing comments earlier by President Michel Sleiman.

Excellent safety record

Until flight 409 lost contact with Beirut airport control shortly after take off, Ethiopian had a better safety record than any other African airline, with the exception of South African Airways, industry sources said.

In an interview with FRANCE 24, David Learmount, aviation expert and editor at industry magazine Flight International said it was unlikely the aircraft had crashed due to mechanical problems.

“Ethiopian Airlines has, until this, been absolutely a beacon of light,” he said. “It’s got an exceptional safety record.”

Learmount also noted that the plane that went down was “from the latest version of the 737 series”, making the crash even more unusual. “We have a first class airline and a first class aeroplane, and there’s been an accident,” he said. “Some 737s still flying were made 40 years ago.”

757 in emergency landing

Earlier this month, one of the company's 757 planes made an emergency landing at Malta's airport while on its way from Addis Ababa to Rome. The pilot reported a problem with one of the two engines. The passengers continued their journey via London Heathrow while the plane and its crew remained in Malta.

Other major security incidents involving Ethiopian Airlines go back more than a decade.

The last major incident involving Ethiopian Airlines was in November 1996 when 125 of the 175 passengers and crew died after a hijacked Boeing 767 crashed into the sea off the Comoros islands.

On its website Ethiopian Airlines says that it hopes to increase revenue to one billion dollars and to increase the number of destinations it serves to 60 in 2010.

The company employs more than 5,000 people, currently has a fleet of 37 aircraft and 35 more on order.

Last week Boeing said that Ethiopian had ordered ten 737-800 jets, in a deal valued at 767 million dollars.

 

Date created : 2010-01-25

  • LEBANON

    Ethiopian Airline flight crashes, no word on survivors

    Read more

  • AVIATION

    Wife of ambassador to Lebanon in Ethiopian jet crash

    Read more

  • LEBANON

    Ethiopian jet crashes into sea off Beirut

    Read more

Comments

COMMENT(S)