The captain of AirAsia flight 8501 may have performed a successful emergency water landing only for the aircraft to be overcome by high seas, aviation experts have said.
The black box from the Airbus, which was carrying 162 people from Indonesia to Singapore when it came down over the Java Sea on Sunday, has yet to be located.
‘The emergency locator transmitter (ELT) would work on impact, be that land, sea or the sides of a mountain, and my analysis is it didn't work because there was no major impact during landing,’ Dudi Sudibyo, a senior editor of aviation magazine Angkasa, said.
‘The pilot managed to land it on the sea's surface,’ he added.
Other crash experts have claimed the AirAsia jet rose up as fast as a fighter jet and then dropped almost vertically into the water as if being thrust down by a giant hand.
Their conclusion is that the Airbus 320-200 was in the grip of weather so freakishly extreme that there was nothing the pilots could have done to save the jet and all 162 people on board.