Asiana pilot landing crashed aircraft was new to 777

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The pilot in charge of landing Asiana Airlines' Boeing 777-200ER at the San Francisco airport on 7 July was relatively new to the aircraft type and had only accumulated 43 flying hours on it.

It was also Lee Kang-Gook's first time flying into the San Francisco airport with the aircraft type, an Asiana spokeswoman tells Flightglobal Pro.

She adds that though Lee only had 43 hours on the 777, he has flown 9,793 hours on Boeing 737, 747 and Airbus A320.

Meanwhile, co-pilot Lee Jeong-min has 12,842 hours of flying experience, she adds.

The US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has confirmed that the pilots of flight 214 flew slower than the target approach speed and had attempted a go-around about 1.5 seconds before crashing on the runway after a 10.5h flight from Seoul's Incheon International Airport. Two passengers were killed and more than 180 of the 307 passengers and crew on board the aircraft were injured in the accident.

Data from the aircraft's cockpit voice recorder examined by the NTSB shows that a flight crew member on board the 777 had called to increase speed about 7 seconds prior to impact.

Asiana Airlines had also reportedly acknowledged that there is no evidence of mechanical error on board the 777 or with the Pratt & Whitney PW4090 engines.

In a filing with the Korean Stock Exchange, Asiana said that it is expecting damages of Won (W) 137.3 billion ($119.4 million) relating to the accident.

The aircraft, registered as HL7742, was delivered on 7 March 2006, and had accumulated 35,700h on 5,185 cycles as of 31 March, Flightglobal Pro online database shows. The 777-200ER, one of 12 in the Asiana fleet, was powered by Pratt & Whitney PW4090 engines.