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The Colgan Air 3407 acciden1pge

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The Colgan Air 3407 Accident
The Colgan Air 3407 accident was a catastrophic tragedy that cost many lives. On 2
February 2009, a Colgani Air Inc., Bombardier DHC-8-400, N200WQ, that was flying to
Buffalo-Niagara International Airport, Buffalo, New York, crashed into a residence in Clarence
Center, New York (National Transport Safety Board [NTSB] 81). The airplane killed its two
pilots, two flight attendants, 45 passengers, and one individual on the ground. Impact forces and
a postcrash fire damaged the plane when it crashed (NTSB 81). Accordingly, an analysis of the
cause of the accident can enable airlines to avoid such an event in the future.
From an ergonomics perspective, the accident was due to the pilots’ incompetence and
fatigue, and also their insecure employment that forced them to work even when tired or sick.
Colgan Airlines had a risky behavior of hiring young and incompetent pilots, whom it would
quickly upgrade to senior positions like a captain (NTSB 65). Consequently, most of the airline's
pilots and captains, including the ones on the Colgan Air 3407 plane, did not have adequate skill
or training to safely fly their airplanes.
Colgan Airlines also underpaid most of its pilots. Consequently, most of them were
forced to sleep in crash pads, which were uncomfortable and far from airports. As a result, most
of them were usually fatigued and not physically ready to fly airlines. This problem was
aggravated by the company’s strict working policy. In fact, most of the pilots used to work up to
16 hours a day. Given that the flight recorder captured a few yawns in the conversation between

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the captain and the first pilot, it indicates that the two were extremely tired when flying (NTSB
272). Therefore, they were not fit to fly the airplane.
If the pilots were competent and alert, they would have used the airplanes hardware to
prevent the accident. According to the black box, the incorrect inputs made by the captain the
airplane exceeded its angle of attack (AOA) and caused the airflow over the wings to separate
(NTSB 83). As a result, there an aerodynamic stall that made the left wing to roll at an angle of
45 degrees (NTSB 83). Subsequent wrong reactions made by the captain caused the airplane to
oscillate several times before it finally crashed. The NTSB notes that the physical inspections of
the airplane's fuselage showed it experienced minimal degradation due to the ice accretion (83).
Therefore, it could have operated at normal flight conditions without the risk of stalling (NTSB
83). Since the ice accretion did not affect the captain’s ability to control the airplane, the accident
was due to his incompetence, which resulted in him entering inappropriate inputs when
responding to the stick shaker (NTSB 84). The captain’s incompetence is also reaffirmed by his
inability to realize that the AeroData landing performance data given by the first officer was
wrong (NSB 82). An experienced captain would have expected higher landing performance
figures, which would compensate for the icing condition.
To prevent accidents in future, airlines should provide their pilots with comfortable
working conditions and adequate salaries to enable them to afford high-quality accommodation
near airports. In addition, they must continuously train them on how to solve minor mishaps that
can occur when flying. Finally, they must ensure that only competent pilots are allowed to fly
their airplanes. In the Colgan Air 3407 case, the accident would not have occurred if the captain
was competent enough to control the airplane.

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Surname 1 Surname Tutor Course Date The Colgan Air 3407 Accident The Colgan Air 3407 accident was a catastrophic tragedy that cost many lives. On 2 February 2009, a Colgani Air Inc., Bombardier DHC-8-400, N200WQ, that was flying to Buffalo-Niagara International Airport, Buffalo, New York, crashed into a residence in Clarence Center, New York (National Transport Safety Board [NTSB] 81). The airplane killed its two pilots, two flight attendants, 45 passengers, and one individual on the ground. Impact forces and a postcrash fire damaged the plane when it crashed (NTSB 81). Accordingly, an analysis of the cause of the accident can enable airlines to avoid such an event in the future. From an ergonomics perspective, the accident was due to the pilots’ incompetence and fatigue, and also their insecure employment that forced them to work even when tired or sick. Colgan Airlines had a risky be ...
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