Addis Ababa, Ethiopia: May 6, 2010 – The Ethiopian airlines said it continues to refute any suggestions or conclusions made in reference to the recent accident of ET409 until the official results of the investigations are publicly released.
According to a statement it sent to ENA on Thursday, quoting an unknown source, AFP reported on May 5, 2010 that the accident of flight ET409 was caused by pilot error based on preliminary report.
The statement said AFP acknowledged that the report was ‘‘preliminary’’ and that it has not been made public.’’ AFP also quoted the Lebanese Information Minister as saying that he ‘‘could not comment on the preliminary findings before the release of the final report…’’
The statement said furthermore, AFP admitted that ‘’none of the investigators would comment on the preliminary findings,’’ including the American and Ethiopian investigators. Therefore, Ethiopian fails to comprehend the coverage of the account by AFP in light of all the above information.
It said Ethiopian Airlines has consistently maintained that it will not entertain any speculations or premature conclusions until the official findings are released and made public by the professionals designated to carry out the investigation in accordance with established international norms and principles.
The statement said Ethiopian strongly believes that any release of information contrary to this process is not only unproductive but also misleading to the general public.
It said during the past sixty plus years, Ethiopian has become one of the continent’s leading carriers, unrivalled in Africa for its efficiency, safety and operational success. It prides itself from the high standards of its workforce including pilots, technicians and many other highly qualified personnel. Professionals in any position at Ethiopian must undertake extensive training and pass stringent evaluation and scrutiny prior to their assignments.
These requirements are consistent with international aviation standards of which Ethiopian is a dedicated subscriber and certified member.
“Any characterization of our pilots contrary to the foregoing is pure fabrication and cannot stand the test. Therefore, the assertions that the cockpit crew had limited experience on B737-800 and that the pilot had 200 hours of flight time in one month is far from the truth,” it said.
“Individual(s) spreading unfounded information are heartless in that they do not care about the feeling of the families and relatives of the victims in addition to misleading the public at large. We urge the media to refine from publishing such information and patiently wait the release of the preliminary findings of the investigation,” according to the statement.