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Old 4th May 2012, 07:26   #101 (permalink)
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When it becomes a political issue, the truth is irrelevant.

There are families that want someone to pay for this and blaming it on dead pilots isn't going to cut it for them.

Theres an election next week too.
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Old 4th May 2012, 09:06   #102 (permalink)
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Supreme Court lays down Helios appeal process - Cyprus Mail
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Old 4th May 2012, 13:41   #103 (permalink)
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Greek Judiciary workings

Just a nasty little detail from the hearings in Athens.
The Prosecution there has used most of the Greek aviation specialists who participated in the investigation and the writing of the report, as prosecution witnesses. This is a straightforward contravention of the Chicago Convention and EU regulation 996/2010 that state that accident investigation reports should only be used to improve safety – not for criminal prosecution.

Criminal damage - Flight International Editor's Blog

Last edited by swish266; 4th May 2012 at 14:34. Reason: added link to Flight blog
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Old 4th May 2012, 15:18   #104 (permalink)
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Why don't you route your indignation by letter/email to UK AAIB or your own investigating authority, as they will be the ones whose questions you will now have to think twice about answering.
Fair point, but my hope is that if enough MPs get mithered by enough of us the AAIB's opinion will be sought and this whole mess put to bed.

Very nice that you wrote to your MP, he can do nothing anyway.

Experience has taught me not to argue with a woman.
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Old 4th May 2012, 16:15   #105 (permalink)
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Greek Legal System

Can I just speak up for the excellent Greek legal system, in case, as CEO, you ever have to face it because one of your engineers left the Captain's seat too far back after he had arranged the flight deck switches for the Captain, in a pleasing and eye catching manner and left the aircraft.

To alleviate the stress of waiting for a verdict, the Greek lawyers told all the defendants at the start of the trial that they would be found guilty regardless of the evidence because that's the way it works in their legal system
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Old 5th May 2012, 14:14   #106 (permalink)
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Post Next action No,10 & AAIB.

could be any one of us waiting to spend the next 10 years in a Greek jail, a PILOT, a MANAGER, an ENGINEER, a CEO or any support group.

In Greece no formal criminal investigation was carried out, the main evidence is the Greek Annex 13 accident report; the main witnesses were the accident investigators.

Irwin’s formal response to the draft Final Report that showed the findings were incorrect was not considered by the Greeks because, as they state “the UK AAIB submitted them incorrectly”. This critical evidence was ignored and the UK AAIB did nothing about it.

The information I have is there are lots of facts that have not been made public yet, but they prove the switch was left in AUTO as Irwin has stated to the Cyprus police from day one and it remained there till impact.

There have been switches that where left unexplained e.g. both engine bleed switches off, both audio switches in MASK. Why were the flight crew oxy masks never found whereas the supernummary masks were found and tested?

The accident report states the cabin on the re-enactment flight pressurised to 1 psi before flight and the cabin and aircraft climbed as expected at the same rate maintaining 1 PSI pressure diff with the switch in MAN and the outflow valve at 15 degrees. Yet the accident report also states the cabin rate of climb on the accident flight recorded on the pressure controller NVM was significantly less than that of the aircraft. It clearly demonstrates the cabin and the aircraft climbed at a different rate to the re-enactment flight. The switch could not be in manual and the OFV at 15 %.

If as the report states the switch was in MAN and the aircraft pressurised to I PSI on the accident flight, how did Irwin depressurise the aircraft after the maintenance. If this was the last place the switch was left the cabin would not have gone below 1 PSI after maintenance and the engineers could not open the door to leave the aircraft.

If the crew departed with the switch in MAN the aircraft would have started to rapidly pressurise to the 1 PSI when the last door or window was closed, then at engine start the air conditioning is switched off and the cabin pressure would plummet to 0 PSI, post engine start the air cond is selected back on and the pressure rapidly rises again. The pressure changes are in the region of 2000 fpm to 4000 fpm. Is there one of us that think we could miss it. Get an aircraft and try it, just be warned it’s alarming. It all points to a failure of the pressurisation system shortly after take-off. Yet with all this and more the accident investigation world will not listen, they look at their own demise as what mad man would assist in an investigation, a system we all believed in is leading its own destruction. Let’s all mail the government to start to listen, I am sending mine to David Cameron P.M. on www.number10.gov
Why not copy this to him and the UK AAIB on kconradi@aaib.gov.uk and ask what they are doing. Remember all four of these Guys are sentenced to 123 years in a Greek prison on no real evidence. Don’t sit back; get everyone on your mailing list to send an e mail today.
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Old 5th May 2012, 15:02   #107 (permalink)
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TOON737. Very good facts presented there. As an engineer, I'm frightened for Irwin and I do hope that this is sorted properly once and for all.
I'm now writing to my MP.
Is there a petition running do we know?
Would it make any difference?
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Old 6th May 2012, 12:10   #108 (permalink)
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Seem to recall a Swissair DC 8 crew being sentenced to two years prison after running off the end of a damp runway covered with rubber deposits in Athens.

As always there were several conflicts in evidence - possible late touchdown but SR was of the opinion it was down to the airport authorities.
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Old 6th May 2012, 12:22   #109 (permalink)
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not quite the same. Back then there was probably an appeal then an extradition case etc. etc.. Were they ever delivered to a Greek prison?

It has been suggested to me that there is now a european arrest warrant and a conviction in a EU member state is treated no different from a conviction in your home state. You will be delivered to the prison of their choice without having the chance of Government intervention or buying more time due to an extradition process being launched.

If that is the case on top of everything else here then this becomes even more scary.
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Old 7th May 2012, 03:42   #110 (permalink)
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A prior case of injustice.

In 1968, a CAT B727 crashed on approach to Taipei. It appears it was following flase glideslope indications , probably as a result of miitary radio interference. Several other aircraft had reported problems with the ILS over the previous days, but the airport authorities did nothing to rectify the problem. Over fifty people died and the foreign pilots were charged with manslaughter. IFALPA stepped into their defence as there were a lot of irregularities, such as maintenace work done just after the crash on the ILS being recorded as happening before the accidnet. IFALPA mentioned that they would instigate a ban on their members operating ino Taiwan if the court case went ahead. The Taiwan governemnt realised that IFALPA had the power to isolate Taiwan from the air and dropped all charges.
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Old 7th May 2012, 07:37   #111 (permalink)
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The Island of Cyprus

The shining light in this travesty is the Cypriot legal system that has demonstrated how civilised European countries should behave.

Yes there was a extensive criminal investigation but it was done properly by the Cypriot police, not ICAO Annex 13 Air Safety Investigators.

Alan Irwin was interviewed at length and his actions were found not to have contributed to the accident so he was not indicted.

The airline management were indicted as was the company, but all were aquitted.

The Greek Report was admitted as evidence but any part of the content that was used had to be proven independently.

There is an appeal in Cyprus and if the verdict is upheld, it will over-ride any decision in Greece so the Helios management will be rightly aquitted there also.

The paradox now is that because Alan Irwin was not tried in Cyprus he was not aquitted and his conviction will still stand in Greece.

So in this crazy situation the one who was even "less guilty" than those aquitted will still face imprisonment in Greece.

Please keep up your presssure to overcome the inbuilt inertia of those who should be in a position to help.
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Old 9th May 2012, 16:46   #112 (permalink)
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So infact you only need 1 crazy judge and that is it really to set back Aviation Safety 30 years.
I presume the 4 would appeal the verdict, but seen the reputation of the Greek judicial systeem this may take many years and lots of $$$$$
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Old 11th May 2012, 17:04   #113 (permalink)
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Reopening the Helios Investigation

Just heard that new and significant evidence has been sent to the Greek Investigators by the State of Cyprus with a request to reopen the investigation.

Now we will see what the Greeks care most about -

Air Safety or a Show Trial
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Old 17th May 2012, 10:07   #114 (permalink)
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Idependent Canadian ivestigation finding

The following is a quotation from the AIR's report.
Anybody willing to have the report, pls PM me and I will send it to you.
It is a further proof that the farce of a trial in Greece was concocted and executed with an only intention - to exercise pressure on the Supreme Court in Cyprus to overthrow the acquittal.

A.I.R.’s Independent Investigation of the Helios Boeing 737-300 – 5B-DBY Accident

Section 1 – Summary of AIR’s Main Findings

1.1 The Conclusions in the Hellenic Final Report are based upon, and are consistent with the apparent deductions in the Boeing Report and the Nord-Micro Report. All these Reports are based on an incorrect belief that the Pressurization Mode Selector had been inadvertently left in the MAN position throughout the flight. The conclusions in these Reports have been completely discredited by proving that the Pressurization Mode Selector was in the AUTO position detent at impact. The conclusions of the AAIASB in the accident report appear to be influenced by the insinuations in the Boeing and the Nord Micro Reports, neither of which actually purport to establish the pre-impact position of the Mode Selector Knob/Switch. However the accident report does not mention any further analysis carried out by AAIASB. The AAIASB accident report is based on the incorrect belief that the Pressurization Mode Selector had been left in the MAN position after maintenance action and throughout the flight. This conclusion by the
AAIASB has been completely discredited by proving that the Pressurization Mode Selector was in the AUTO position detent at impact, having been forcibly turned by impact forces through 100 degrees to the as-found position past the MAN detent at the accident scene.

1.2 The aircraft failed to pressurize properly even though the system was selected to the AUTO Mode for the entire accident flight. The analysis to date clearly shows that the failure of the aircraft to pressurize was caused by a malfunction (or malfunctions) in the pressurization control system; that is, the Nord-Micro Pressurization System Components failed during the accident flight.

Last edited by swish266; 17th May 2012 at 10:13.
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Old 17th May 2012, 15:47   #115 (permalink)
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AIR Report

These are top ISASI investigative engineers who did this report (google - AIR, Canada) and I believe it was given as evidence for the defence.

Along with evidence from other top people from UK, medical, flying, engineering, Flight Operations, Air Accident Investigation, this WAS DISCOUNTED BY THE JUDGE because it was not given by Greeks and did not agree with the Greek's idea of an Annex 13 investigation.

If you are managing, fixing or flying anything that goes into Greek Airspace be warned!
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Old 15th Jun 2012, 01:12   #116 (permalink)
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I hope Alan does not go back there for the trial.
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Old 15th Jun 2012, 13:45   #117 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by The Real Pink Baron
I hope Alan does not go back there for the trial.
If he UK based (or anywhere in the EU) the Greeks will probably issue a European Arrest Warrant and our government is bound (by EU legislation) to hand him over.

European Arrest Warrant - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Don't think it doesn't get used, in 2009 700 people from the UK were extradited using the EAW. And yes, there's many, many cases where it has been used wrongly, incorrectly or for minor things.
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Old 29th Jun 2012, 13:00   #118 (permalink)
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Finally got my reply from my MP.

The Minister for Europe at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office has also written to me via my MP. It seems the F&CO has no clout but has been made aware of Mr Irwin's plight.

It doesn't really address the nub of the problem but at least my elected representatives are showing some effort.

We will see.
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Old 3rd Jul 2012, 11:56   #119 (permalink)
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Judges Reasoning

It is time for all engineers to take action before they find themselves in prison.

The Greek judge has has given her reasons for banging up Alan Irwin for 123 years and has set the precendent that an engineer is responsible for configuring an aircraft for flight:

"Furthermore, the Court did not accept the arguments of the defendant that it was the pilot’s sole responsibility to set the switch to the AUTO position, because the pilots have a number of obligations that are also obligations of the engineer."

The reasoning is 400 pages of similar ill informed rubbish which will probably not get a public airing. Maybe someone should 'name and shame' her for putting aviation safety back 100 years.

How about boycotting all aircraft going into Greek airspace or belonging to Greek operators for a start.
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Old 3rd Jul 2012, 12:01   #120 (permalink)
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What an absolute this sentence is. No wonder the Greeks are in such a mess if this is an indication of things.

Greece, you should be royally ashamed of yourself, take two demerits and leave the EU immediately!
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