TWICE AS FAR

 

SWISSAIR 111

CRASH INVESTIGATION

 

 

 

- EXTRACT FROM FILE NOTES -

 

 

FOR

- 2000 JAN 07 -

 

00-01-07          1400    In late as took xxxxx to the airport.  On arriving, met up with Vic GORMAN who advised that his reply to my Airflow memo was on my desk and that I might not like all of what he wrote.  He was right.  Some of what he wrote makes no sense at all and makes me wonder about what is going on.  The reply forms part of my hard notes for this date.

At about 1445 hrs, Jim FOOT came over to ask when I was heading up to Ottawa.  When I asked what he meant, he informed me that the Auger testing starts on Monday, the 10th.  I told him that this was the first that I had heard of it, and he said that they had notified everybody before Xmas and that it was on for sure.  When asked, he said that Gus and he had made the arrangements in early December.  When I asked if they knew at the time of our meeting, he said that he could not remember, that he had e-mail that had been sent out and he would check the dates.  I asked him why I had not received a copy, and he said that he didnít realize that I had an Internet address.  I gave him my card with the address on it and told him to send me the e-mail messages. 

Needless to say, I wasnít very happy, and neither were Vic GORMAN and Andy LATHEM.  The last words from Gus just before he left were that they were still trying to arrange a date, that Dr. BROWN was going to be away lecturing most of January and that it would likely be February before any testing.  We had the meeting on 99-12-15 and nothing was mentioned.  On 99-12-09, I made notes as follows:

Spoke with Gus SIDLA again about AES.  There is a problem with dates in January as Jim FOOT cannot be present for two weeks solid.  He is considering a week beginning 00JAN17, and then another week in February.

Jim mentioned that he was going to send me a copy of his minutes for the December meeting that we had on AES, once he makes them up.  He wants to give them to us for our records.  By the way he spoke, it was apparent that he had not yet made them and would be going from memory.  He asked me to advise him if he missed anything.  I made my notes of the meeting right after it was over.  Jim and I also spoke about the samples.  He first asked me what we were doing regarding follow-up testing for the magnesium.  When I told him that I was still taking samples from Johnís list, he seemed disturbed that it was taking so long.  I explained the protocol and that everything was being documented and photographed.  But he asked when and where they would be submitted.  I explained that the lab in Ottawa would do them, but that I want to submit them all together.  I explained that they would likely sit on them until they are all in.  He agreed and left.  Before doing so though, he agreed that we had to look into the problem of the magnesium, that it was separate from the Anderson theory, and that even if the Anderson theory did not pan out, that this would have to be investigated or it would continue to haunt the investigation.  He did not think that it was a matter of utmost concern, but that it would be raised as such if it was not thoroughly looked into.  It would seem that they have had time to think about the matter over the holidays and have realized that they cannot move on to the end without covering all the bases.

Later, I found out that he had discussed it with Andy LATHEM, and Andy wants what I have submitted next week while I am in Ottawa.  So, have to take them to Ottawa and sort them out.  Why canít things be done in a simple manner?

So, collected my gear, arranged for tickets (full fare less 11% normal discount Ė could not provide at least 3 days prior notice), and everything packed up.  Not taking too much as all of the wires are done. 

Later, Jim FOOT advised that he had four wires that he had taken from the box and he will courier them up after next week.  Phil is in and they want to work on them the first of next week.

On the airflow test, had a chance to speak with John GARSTANG.  I asked him if we would have a position on the aircraft if we went, and he said that we would have.  He said that he feels that this is a co-investigation and wishes that we would handle this in that manner.  As co-investigators, we would have access to the aircraft, control of the tapes, and can oversee the video taping if we see problems.  As for the Boeing people being trained, he felt that they would have no reason to be trained in forensic photography or have any court experience.  Generally, he would like to see us present as he is having problems with Boeing people trying to dictate to him what will take place.  Our presence would put a damp towel on it.

Phoned Vic GORMAN this evening to fill him in on what had transpired this afternoon.  I also went over the airflow memos, particularly some of the points that he had raised.  I told him that I did not agree with his points and arguments, and he quickly told me that he did not agree with my point of view and stood firm on his own thoughts.  I suggested that the Boeing photo people were not trained in Forensic photography and had no need to be, and that they certainly had no court experience.  I told him of GARSTANGís comments about being a co-investigator and thus our having access to the test flight.  Vicís concern was jurisdiction in the US, and I told him that we had seized exhibits in Switzerland with no problems.  Since this was a TSB test and we were co-investigators, we had as much jurisdiction as did the TSB.  Certainly, Boeing nor Swissair have no right to intervene.   I told him that our presence would back up the authority of TSB, and that I had seen it in Switzerland when Boeing questioned something, I simply said no (insulation blankets) and there was no further question raised.  But I was simply told by Vic that it was not my decision, that Andy will have to make the decision, and that he stood by his recommendations.

We then went on to discuss other things.  Supt. DUNCAN is coming over on the 11th to be briefed on the file (he has been away for two months).  Andy has just completed a staffing action for Janieís replacement and four new bodies in data entry.  So, it would seem that he feels the file will continue for some time yet.  But it seems that TSB has again raised the issue of moving things to Ottawa in April.  My info is that they canít even find a building to house the investigation, so how can it be moved? 





 

 

 

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