Pilots’ ‘Unprofessional Behavior’ Led to CRJ Fatal

 - January 12, 2007, 4:22 AM

The NTSB concluded that the “unprofessional behavior” and “poor airmanship” of the pilots caused the Oct. 14, 2004 crash of a Pinnacle Airlines Bombardier CRJ. The two pilots (the only people aboard) were killed. After the pilots took the regional jet to its maximum operating altitude of 41,000 feet, both engines quit. The pilots “deviated from standard operating procedures and their poor airmanship resulted in an in-flight emergency from which they were unable to recover.” The Board also cited the pilots’ inadequate training and their failure to properly prepare for an emergency landing and to communicate with ATC immediately. In releasing its probable cause on Tuesday, the Board listed the pilots’ “failure to achieve and maintain the target airspeed in the double-engine-failure checklist, which caused the engine cores to stop rotating and resulted in the core lock engine condition.” In addition, the Safety Board said, the flight manual failed to emphasize the importance of maintaining a minimum airspeed to keep the cores rotating.