More details emerged on Wednesday about last year's Boeing 737 MAX 8 crash in Indonesia, further exposing what experts say was a lack of pilot training on the plane's suspect flight management system as the delay continued in releasing critical information about what might have caused a second deadly crash 11 days ago in Ethiopia.
The pilots aboard the Lion Air plane that crashed in October struggled with their quick reference handbook, a checklist for abnormal events, and eventually ran out of time before crashing into the ocean minutes later, individuals with knowledge of the cockpit voice recorder told ABC News Chief Transportation Correspondent David Kerley.
And the day before that crash, a similar situation unfolded on the same plane but was narrowly avoided with the help of an off-duty Lion Air pilot riding in the cockpit jump seat, according to a report from Bloomberg.
The off-duty pilot told the captain and co-pilot how to disable the malfunctioning flight management system that was causing the plane to nosedive, according to Bloomberg. The next day, the same problem happened -- but this time the pilots on board did not disable the system -- and the aircraft crashed into the ocean off of Indonesia, killing all 189 on board.
Terrifying new details about the deadly Boeing disaster: New reports come out about the fatal Lion Air crash just months before the other Boeing jet went down. @David_Kerley has the details. https://t.co/TzA8w0f7kQ pic.twitter.com/1PsFnKuAcn— Good Morning America (@GMA) March 20, 2019
On March 10, five months later, Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 crashed right after takeoff near the country’s capital of Addis Ababa. Though the flight data and cockpit voice recorders containing critical information were found one day later, families of victims have waited nearly two weeks without getting conclusive information about what was on the recorders or many details on similarities between the crashes.
The black boxes were analyzed in France last week and returned to Ethiopia. Ethiopia's top aviation official told the Wall Street Journal that a preliminary report, with data from the black boxes could be released in a week to eight days.