American Airlines sabotage saga: what we know and answer security questions

September 07, 2019
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The arrest of a veteran American Airlines mechanic this week for sabotaging a plane at Miami International Airport an hour before takeoff in July on Friday punished the airline and its mechanic association and increased safety concerns for passengers.

According to Business Insider, in brand new development: The 60-year-old mechanic fired Alaska Airlines over a decade ago, after which "several FAA investigations were wrongly done" and then sued the airline for discrimination. Report.

Alaska spokesman Ray Lane confirmed that Abdul-Majeed Marouf Ahmad Alani was an avionics technician and avionics technician who worked for Seattle-based Alaska from January-August 1990 and June 1998 to July 2008. He declined to comment on his personal history or reason. Excluding.

These dates overlap with his employment at American, which he joined in 1988 and were based in Miami, so it is unclear how he held both jobs or if American knew his work history at the airline. With exceptions, employees are not prohibited from doing two jobs.


In a letter to employees, the world's largest airline Bonnie called the alleged manipulation of the Boeing 737-800 for the Bahamas, with 150 people boarding the "extremely serious" incident, saying it was "disturbing and disappointing" . For all of us. ""

Senior vice president David Seymour suggested, however, that such manipulation was a rare occurrence.

"The allegations involve a person who compromised the safety of one of our aircraft," he said in the letter. "Fortunately, with the appropriate safety protocols and procedures in place, this person's actions were discovered and minimized before our aircraft took flight."

The TWU / IAM Association, which has been locked in contract disputes and a legal battle with Americans over what the airline calls an illegal labor action this summer, condemned the incident. Alani told investigators that he blocked an important computer system to delay or cancel the flight because he was angry at stopping contractual negotiations and said that it hurt him financially.

The association's director, Cyto Pantoza, and deputy director Alex Garcia signed a statement:

"The TWU / IAM Association condemns, in the strongest possible terms, any conduct of anyone who endangers the safe operation of the safety of an aircraft, number one for our IAM and members associated with maintenance and airline service Priority of "Members are the most highly trained security professionals in the airline industry. As a result, the US air transport system is the safest in the world. "Any conduct which is not tolerated or tolerated by members of our organizations. '

How easy is it for an airline employee to handle an aircraft?
"There is definitely ease of access," said Bill Waldock, a professor of security science at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Prescott, Arizona.

Mechanics and pilots board airplanes every day before and after flights to work on or test aircraft. All are certified by the Federal Aviation Administration and go through a background check.

"These are the people holding the aircraft, who fly the plane," asks John Cox, a retired US Airways captain who runs the aviation safety consulting firm Safety Operating System and writes Pillar, USA Captain. "It is very appropriate, it is very necessary, it is necessary that they have access to the aircraft."

Waldock said airlines have much greater security of support and checks and balances, including quality control workers to oversee the work.

Alani was not working on his shift or general station. Why did no one notice?
According to a criminal complaint against Alani in United States district court in Miami, the mechanic should not have acted on a panel on the nose of the aircraft because there was neither any report of a mechanical problem nor a pending work order, U.S. law. The enforcement officer spoke.

Two more red flags: He usually works on handicapped airplanes in maintenance hangars at Miami International, not on airplanes at the door. And his turn was usually from 10 o'clock. At 6:30, the airline said. He said that he worked in that shift on 16 July and then changed the shift to working in the morning shift the next morning. Worked until 2:30 p.m., the day of the incident, American told investigators. He worked hard.

Cox said that there are a lot of moving parts on the plane's ramp that could have been revealed by an experienced worker, Alani as if they were just doing their job. Cox rides the plane every day with a different task list and some secondary form.

"People around me don't know what I'm doing," he said. "You test and train people and expect them to do what they are about to do."

American has not commented on any details beyond its description. US spokesman Ross Feinstein said Alnis has been suspended from the US after spending his arrest

150 in 2834 onboard flight people. Were they in danger?
Desperate as an inefficient computer system on an aircraft about to take off the plane, Waldock and Cox insists that passengers were never threatened because the Airborne Blocking Data Module (ADM) provided a pre-routine check to the cabin during departure Had provided. I immediately started warning.

"This is easily detectable because they will receive a large error message in front of their screen on the instrument panel," Waldock said. "I will tell them that the system is not working properly."

This sends the aircraft back to the door, which has occurred with Flight 2834.

"This is a very unfortunate action by an unhappy person, but it did not put people at risk due to the design of the aircraft and the training of the pilots, to ensure that all the systems worked before the flight," Cox said . he said.

In an unexpected situation, the error did not blink or be detected until the flight was in the air, there are backup systems that would come into operation, Waldock and Cox said.

"There is a set of waits for equipment completely detached from that entire system (ADM), which is intended to provide you with enough information to be able to fly the aircraft," Waldock said.

American Airlines sabotage saga: a timeline
According to court documents and FlightAware.com flight tracking service, how the incident happened.

July 17, 2019

8:39 am: American Airlines Flight 365 reaches Orlando International Airport from Miami Gate D 49 International Airport.

9: 28–9: 35 pm.: According to surveillance video, Alani works on the aircraft at the door, focusing on a compartment in the nose of the aircraft possessing an important computer system. He later admitted that he intentionally disrupted the ADM system using a dark polystyrene foam type material. At that time he had no work order or request and usually works in a maintenance hangar.

9:36 pm.: Alani returns to his truck and leaves the area.

American Airlines Flight 2834 leaves Miami for Nassau, the Bahamas at 10:30 am. Error messages appear on the Boeing 737-800's flight deck before arriving on the runway. Takeoff is aborted.

Around 10:45 am: The aircraft arrived at Gate D48 to be maintained. An American mechanic discovered an ADM filled with loose pitot tubes and deep styrofoam type material.

At 12:13. The aircraft is not considered under airworthiness conditions and is out of service. A hanger is placed for deep maintenance. Closed ADMs were replaced.

3:20 pm. The 2834 flight passengers are on their second flight to Nassau with a delay of five hours.

18 July

4:12 a.m: Airline is back.

19 July

American Airlines Corporate Security communicated with the FBI about the possible sabotage of one of its aircraft and a shared surveillance video.

5 September.

Alani is arrested in Miami and charged with "intentionally causing damage to, destroying, deactivating or destroying an aircraft". He told law enforcement officials that he was "upset over a stable contract dispute between union workers and American Airlines and that the dispute affected him financially." He said he did not intend to harm anyone, but wanted to delay or cancel the flight to do overtime.

6 September

According to CNN, Alani made his first appearance in a United States district court and pleaded not guilty. A bond hearing is scheduled for Wednesday.