[JAKARTA] Problems with the rudder system and the flight crew's subsequent response led AirAsia Flight 8501 to crash in December of last year, killing all 162 passengers and crew on board, a government investigation found.
A malfunction with the rudder system led to four warnings, a report released Tuesday by Indonesia's National Transportation Safety Committee showed. On the fourth warning, the plane disengaged from autopilot and caused the flight crew to lose control of the aircraft, the report showed. The committee found no indication that weather was a factor in the crash, head investigator Nurcahyo Utomo told reporters in Jakarta.
Investigators examined aircraft maintenance records and found 23 instances of rudder system problem in the last 12 months, with the interval of occurrence becoming shorter in the last three months, according to the report.