China: Pilot Failed to Locate Runway Before Crash

July 2, 2012

China says a commercial airline pilot failed to locate the runway before landing and abandoned the plane after it crashed in northeastern China two years ago.

The State Administration of Work Safety called for the chief pilot to be prosecuted. The agency’s investigation report also suggested Henan Airlines be fined 5 million yuan ($795,000) for lax safety management.

The 2010 crash that killed 44 people and injured 52 was China’s first major commercial air disaster in nearly six years.

The agency says chief pilot Qi Quanjun violated aviation rules during the descent and did not locate the runway before landing.

The Embraer E-190 jet hit the ground 690 meters (2,260 feet) short of the runway at the Lindu airport in Heilongjiang province’s Yichun city, then burst into flames.

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