Documentary on AirAsia flight QZ8501 to focus on ‘super storms’

A section of the tail of AirAsia QZ8501 passenger plane is lifted off a ship and onto the back of a truck, the day after it was lifted from the seabed, in Kumai Port, near Pangkalan Bun, central Kalimantan January 11, 2015. — Reuters pic
A section of the tail of AirAsia QZ8501 passenger plane is lifted off a ship and onto the back of a truck, the day after it was lifted from the seabed, in Kumai Port, near Pangkalan Bun, central Kalimantan January 11, 2015. — Reuters pic

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SINGAPORE, March 20 — Discovery Channel today announced that it will be broadcasting FLIGHT 8501: STORM DISASTER, about the tragic events of AirAsia flight 8501.

The aircraft, with its 155 passengers and seven-member crew, was lost in a storm 40 minutes into its journey from Indonesia to Singapore on December 28, 2014 — concluding the worst year for aviation disasters in a decade.

The 60-minute special attempts to shed some light on the mystery that surrounds the event, and provides one of the most comprehensive explanations as to what happened, it said in a statement.

It said FLIGHT 8501: STORM DISASTER will premiere on Discovery Channel (StarHub Channel 422) on April 12, with its Singapore premiere at 8pm local time.

The special will also air across the Asia-Pacific and internationally, in more than 220 countries and territories.

Theresa Ong, senior vice president and general manager, Southeast Asia, Discovery Networks Asia-Pacific, said: “Once again, Discovery is bringing viewers compelling stories that have strong local interest.

"These specials help provide insight into the tragedies and tell inspiring stories of bravery and the tenacity of the human spirit in the darkest of hours," she said.

Comparing and contrasting the story of AirAsia flight 8501 with recent aviation tragedies such as Air France flight 447 and Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, the documentary will examine the impact of the Earth’s changing climate on the aviation industry.             

It will question whether so-called “super storms” are becoming more frequent and severe, putting planes at greater risk than ever before. 

It will also explore whether today’s aviation technology leaves pilots too dependent on automation, resulting in information overload in critical situations.

FLIGHT 8501: STORM DISASTER is commissioned by Elizabeth McIntyre, vice president Production and Development, Factual for Discovery Networks International. — Bernama

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