The vice president of Russia’s Sukhoi corporation has dismissed suggestions that the pilot of a Superjet-100 plane that crashed into a mountain near Indonesia’s capital Jakarta in May was unaware of the landscape in the area.
“This was a demonstration flight, and the plane was to fly over many airports. It has crossed the equator, and it’s impossible to count all mountains along its route,” Igor Vinogradov said in an interview with Russian government daily Rossiiskaya Gazeta published on Thursday.
“As stipulated by [flight] regulations, the pilot had to make himself aware of the landscape in the areas where he was to fly, which has in fact been done,” he said, adding that an independent commission examined the crew’s readiness for the flight.
The Superjet-100 slammed into Mount Salak near Jakarta on May 9 when it was on a short demonstration flight for potential buyers. All 45 people on board were killed.
Vinogradov also dismissed suggestions that the plane could have problems with its air conditioning system, or that the crash could be a result of bad weather.
The Superjet’s onboard communications systems operated properly, as well as the collision avoidance system, he said, adding, however, that the pilot could have turned the latter off.