Garuda Indonesia Flight 200
Tail of Garuda Indonesia Flight 200.
|Date||7 March 2007|
|Summary||Runway overrun, pilot error|
|Site||Adisucipto International Airport (IATA: JOG; ICAO: WARJ)
|Aircraft type||Boeing 737–497|
Garuda Indonesia Flight 200 (GA200) was a scheduled domestic passenger flight of a Boeing 737-497 operated by Garuda Indonesia between Jakarta and Yogyakarta, Indonesia. The aircraft crashed and burst into flames while landing at Adisucipto International Airport on 7 March 2007. Twenty passengers and one crew member were killed; both the captain and the first officer survived and were admitted to an Indonesian military hospital.
The aircraft was a Boeing 737-400, registered as PK-GZC, which had been operated by three airlines – Aloha Airlines, Star Europe and Jet Airways – before being acquired by Garuda Indonesia. The aircraft had a total of 35,157 airframe hours and 37,328 cycles since its first flight on 5 November 1992.
The oldest airline in Indonesia (founded in 1949), Garuda Indonesia had received a number of criticisms in the months surrounding the crash. According to Australian aviation experts, Garuda Indonesia had one of the worst safety records among the world's national carriers. Since 1950, Garuda Indonesia has had 14 major accidents with the most recent in 1997, when Garuda Indonesia Flight 152 crashed 18 miles off Medan Airport in Sumatra, killing all 234 passengers. The managing director of the Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation, Peter Harbison, stated that the major accidents in Indonesian aviation history were all caused by the combinations of airports' and fleets' low safety standards and the poor weather conditions in the area, including severe thunderstorms and other forms of inclement weather.
Flight GA200 originated in Jakarta and was carrying 133 passengers, 19 of whom were foreigners. Several Australian journalists were on the flight, covering the visit of Foreign Affairs Minister Alexander Downer and Attorney-General Philip Ruddock to Java. They were on the flight as the aircraft carrying Australian dignitaries were at capacity.
At 6:58am local time (UTC+7), while attempting to land at Adisucipto International Airport, Yogyakarta, Indonesia, the plane overran the end of the runway, went through the perimeter fence and stopped in a nearby rice field after it bounced three times. The aircraft touched down 860m beyond the runway threshold at a speed of 221kt, 87kt faster than the normal landing speed. According to passengers, the plane shook violently before it crashed. At some point the plane caught fire, and while most passengers were able to escape, a number of passengers perished inside the burning fuselage. This may have been caused by the broken main exit door, which is located at the front left. The fire may have been ignited from the nose landing gear after its wheels were snapped off, which were found later on the runway.
One of the passengers was a cameraman for the Australian Seven Network. He escaped from the burning wreckage with his camera and started filming the aftermath. He made a telephone call to inform the network's Sydney newsroom and the footage was beamed back to appear on the 6pm news of that night. Australian Federal Police agents Brice Steele and Mark Scott, Australian Embassy staffers Liz O'Neill (public relations officer) and Allison Sudradjat (Minister Counsellor and Senior Representative of AusAID), and Australian Financial Review newspaper journalist Morgan Mellish were among those killed.
The accident was investigated by the National Transportation Safety Committee. Australian Federal Police disaster victim identification experts were deployed to the scene to assist with the identification of bodies. Australian Transport Safety Bureau staff assisted at the scene by inspecting the wreckage to attempt to piece together a picture of the incident. The "black box" recorders consisting of a flight data recorder and cockpit voice recorder were removed from the wreckage and flown to Canberra, Australia, for further analysis by the Bureau of Air Safety Investigations using equipment not yet available in Indonesia. The United States' National Transportation Safety Board dispatched a team to assist in the investigation, including representatives from Boeing and the Federal Aviation Administration. Staff in Australia could not read the cockpit voice recorder of the black box, which was then sent to the Boeing factory in Seattle, United States, to be deciphered.
After the flight data and black box recordings were analyzed, and a complete safety review of the airport was conducted, it was revealed that the Yogyakarta Airport did not conform to international safety standards, having a runway runoff 60m in length, compared to a recommended 90m; pilots reported the reverse thrust of one engine was not working prior to takeoff; the weather was calm, contradicting claims of an updraft; data recordings revealed no mechanical fault before landing; black box recordings revealed there was no cockpit argument, as reported; safety vehicles were unable to reach the crash site in sufficient time, failing to conform to global safety standards.
On 17 March 2007, new evidence from the flight data recorder indicated that wing flaps on the plane were not extended for landing. The captain had called instructed the co-pilot to extend the flaps to 15', but the latter had not done so because the aircraft was still travelling faster the 205kt maximum speed for that configuration. On 11 April 2007, Indonesia's National Safety Transport Committee released a preliminary finding into the crash, confirming that Garuda Flight 200 was travelling at around 410 km/h when it came in to land. A Garuda Pilots' Association official has speculated that the captain could have been trying to save fuel due to a new fuel conservation bonus scheme recently introduced by Garuda Indonesia.
On 22 October 2007, the official enquiry blamed the crash on pilot error. The captain ignored the plane's automated warning system as it sounded alarms fifteen times. He also ignored calls from the co-pilot to go around and make another approach.
On 4 February 2008 the captain, Marwoto Komar, was arrested and charged with six counts of manslaughter. The charge carries a penalty up to life imprisonment if the court finds the crash was deliberate. Short of that finding, the lesser charge of negligent flying causing death, carries a maximum sentence of seven-years. The copilot testified that he had told the captain to go around because of excessive speed, and that he then had blacked out due to the severe buffeting. On 6 April 2009, the captain was found guilty of negligence and sentenced to 2 years in jail. The conviction was quashed by the Indonesian High Court on 29 September 2009.
Change of flight number
Garuda has changed the flight number from GA 200 to GA 202. GA 200 normally left Jakarta at around 6.15 AM (the first flight out of Jakarta bound for Yogyakarta). GA 202 now leaves at 6am.
- Air safety
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- Ground effect in aircraft
- List of notable accidents and incidents on commercial aircraft
- Pilot error
- Runway safety area
- SilkAir Flight 185
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- NTSC final report, section 1.2 "Injuries to persons", page 7
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- "PK-GZC Garuda Indonesia Boeing 737–497 – cn 25664 / ln 2393". Planespotters. 9 March 2007. Retrieved 20 July 2007.
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- Firdaus, Irwan (7 March 2007). "Flames engulf Indonesian jet, killing 21". Associated Press Writer. Archived from the original on 29 September 2007. Retrieved 7 March 2007.
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- NTSC final report, section 2.6 "Runway end safety area", page 51
- "Plane Hit at Twice Usual Speed". The Sydney Morning Herald. 7 April 2007.
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- Lucy Williamson (21 October 2007). "'Pilot error' caused Java crash". BBC. Retrieved 21 October 2007.
- Mark Forbes (5 February 2008). "Captain charged over Garuda crash". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 5 February 2008.
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- Stephen Fitzpatrick (25 July 2008). "Garuda pilot 'missed chance' to correct deadly mistake". The Australian.
- Stephen Fitzpatrick (28 October 2008). "Garuda co-pilot 'blacked out' in Yogyakarta crash". The Australian.
- "Indonesian crash pilot sentenced". BBC News. 6 April 2009. Retrieved 6 April 2009.
- Allard, Tom (12 December 2009). "Crashed jet pilot's conviction quashed in high court". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 12 December 2009.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Garuda Indonesia Flight 200.|
|Pre-accident pictures of the airplane|
- National Transportation Safety Committee
- Final Report (Archive)
- Media Release – Final NTSC investigation report into the Boeing 737 accident at Yogyakarta on 7 March 2007 involving Garuda Indonesia flight GA200 (Archive)
- (Indonesian) Media Release – Laporan Akhir KNKT Penyelidikan Kecelakaan Pesawat Boeing 737 Garuda Indonesia GA200 di Yogyakarta, tanggal 7 Maret 2007 (Archive)