Deadly plane crash rumors dispelled
The cause of the crash of a China Eastern Airlines aircraft on March 21 is still undetermined, an official with the China Aviation Administration of China said, adding that rumors saying the analysis of the data of the black boxes has been completed and that the co-pilot was responsible are untrue.
CAAC has noticed rumors falsely using the names of government bodies and public security departments circulating online recently. Besides blaming the co-pilot for the crash and announcing the analysis of the black boxes is out, some also say that the administration has issued an urgent directive requiring pilots to take psychological health assessments, Wu Shijie, deputy director of the administration's safety office, told a news conference on Monday.
"Those rumors have severely misguided the public and interrupted the investigation. Together with the public security departments, we are trying to find out those responsible for spreading the rumors and they will be handled in accordance with the law," Wu said. "Authorities are still investigating the cause of the crash, so it's still too early to provide conclusions."
The Boeing 737 aircraft, which departed from Kunming, Yunnan province for Guangzhou, Guangdong province, crashed in Tengxian county of the Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region on March 21. All 132 people on board were killed.
It's undeniable that the crash has had a certain degree of psychological and emotional impact on pilots and crews, Wu said. Some of them, especially young employees, have become stressed and depressed, and the administration has attached great importance to looking after their mental health.
"We asked airlines to offer psychological support to their pilots and crew members to ensure they are emotionally stable. Such support has proved effective and the employees can fully take on the responsibility of aviation safety," said Wu, adding that taking care of civil aviation employees' mental health is part of routine management.
On March 22, the administration launched a two-week safety inspection of the industry aimed at discovering and eliminating safety hazards.
The inspection is being carried out in all areas, including regional civil aviation administrations, airline companies, airports and pilot training organizations. More safety inspections will be carried out in China's civil aviation industry soon to prevent major accidents, Wu said.
Before the crash, the Chinese mainland had a safe flight record of 4,227 days, the best such record worldwide.
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