After over 27 years, too many facts regarding the crash, even on the actual crash itself, are still uncertain.
This uncertainty continues causing anxiety, frustration and doubts.
December 21st, 1992. Martinair flight MP495 crashes at the airport of Faro, Portugal while the crew attempts to land the plane in bad weather conditions.
The DC10, PH-MBN “Anthony Ruys”, is owned by the Royal Netherlands Air Force and is destined to be converted into a KDC-10.
As result of the crash 54 passengers and 2 flight attendants die. Over 200 occupants sustain physical injuries.
Here ends the consensus on the crash, the crash events, it’s causes and it’s consequences.
Even after the court verdict of January 8th, 2020 the basic question whether the pilots aligned the plane properly with Faro-runway center line remains unanswered.
Are the proper lessons (ICAO Annex 13) learned?
January 8th, 2020 verdict by The Hague court (no cross examination of the independent experts by claimants)
– Dutch State partly liable in 1992 Faro plane crash, rules court
– Faro survivor: “There is justice now, but we remain losers”, mbs.news
(NB This article was originally in Dutch. Translation is not always correct. The last name of the chairman ‘Brick’ is ‘Baksteen’. His last name has been translated, probably by accident)
– From the verdict, need for a missed approach procedure
Opportunity to commemorate the crash
December 21st, 2019 the St. Johns Basilica in Laren (NH) was opened between 2 pm and 4 pm for the possibilty of commemorating the crash and its victims.
Causes of the crash (deficient -Dutch- investigation up to 2011)
The day after the crash Martin Schröder (founder and CEO of Martinair), together with the then Dutch Minister of Transport, helt a press conference . In this press conference Mr Schroeder stated that an unexpected windshear was the cause of the crash. Some consequences of an unexpected windshear as cause of the crash are diminished responsibility and liability for Martinair.
Despite the findings in the official Portuguese Investigation report, the ‘unexpected windshear theory’ remained the dominant Dutch view.
The public doubts and questions, as raised by the passengers on the flight, on the crash and its causes never seemed to be taken seriously.
This partial Dutch view is sustained by the then lack of independent crash investigation in The Netherlands.
NB The American NTSB also seems to doubt the unexpected windshear theory in it’s letter; annex to the official Portuguese Investigation Report.
New analysis of the facts and court cases
In February 2011 (updated December 2012), over 18 years after the plane crash, an investigation by Mr. Harry Horlings of AvioConsult is published. This investigation strengthens in my opinion the outcome of the official Portuguese report, in which the pilots and their actions and non-actions are chiefly regarded as leading to the crash.
In January 2018 AvioConsult published a detailed analysis on the last 80 seconds of Flight MP495.
Perhaps because of the court cases against Martinair (court in Amsterdam) and the State of The Netherlands (court in The Hague), that were started end of 2012 on basis of above mentioned analysis, there were no public reactions regarding content and/or refutations to the ‘Investigation Horlings’.
In July 2015 the court in The Hague appointed three non-Dutch investigators to look into this case.
Hope is that the outcome of the independent investigation and court cases will bring more clarity and subsequent peace of mind.
For a more complete picture of the underlying causes of the crash, starting with the management and safety culture of Martinair, a Swiss Cheese Model type of investigation was needed after the crash.
Consequences (too little attention for)
Partly thanks to the aftermath of the crash of EL Al flight 1862 in Amsterdam, three months earlier, there is attention for possible psycho trauma, as PTSD, and for mourning.
For all the practical and long term real life consequences for surviving occupants and family members there is insufficiënt attention.
Because the people concerned live scattered all over The Netherlands, and even in other countries, there is too little awareness for and recognition of the real impact (High Energy Trauma) and consequences of the crash.
Mild Traumatic Brain Injury, especially Decelaration Injury, can easily be overlooked and consequences such as Mental Fatigue neglected.
Possible co-existence of Mild Traumatic Brain Injury and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder interferes with the process of proper diagnosis and treatment.
Remarks in English by the web site author, related to investigation report topics:
• Meteorological flight preparation
• Experience on DC-10 of pilots
• Fire and alarm before the crash
• Premature power reduction
• Survivability of the crash
• Wikipedia English
• Video of wreckage of PH-MBN on YouTube, 3:43
• animation of the incorrect approach and subsequent crash of the DC-10 Anthony Ruys
• PortugalResident January 20, 2016: ‘Plane…never should have left Amsterdam’
• Algarve Daily News, December 21, 2018: Dutch air crash at Faro airport – 26-years ago on December 21st
For questions, remarks and/or suggestions, please contact
Cor tenHove via cortenhove -at- outlook.com .