The pilots of the Air India Express plane that crashed while landing in Kerala's Calicut International Airport on August 7, were alerted about the bad weather in the area. They were also informed about the tailwinds, which were "within permissible limits", Arun Kumar, the Director General of Civil Aviation, told NDTV.
In an attempt to land on the tabletop runway, the flight had touched down far ahead at full speed and had toppled over and landed in the valley. The investigators are examining whether poor visibility caused by incessant rainfall was one of the factors of the crash. Reportedly, the runway surface was wet and would have impacted the braking performance of the aircraft after it touched down.
"The ATC had briefed the pilots about the weather condition... the call has to be taken by the commander to go around or to land," Kumar said, adding that the aircraft rescue team and the firefighters responded immediately.
"They saw the aircraft go down and then the alarm was sounded and the rescue work started," he said, explaining that the entire process took 10 minutes.
The Air India Express aircraft had landed more than 1 kilometre down the length of the runway in windy and rainy conditions.
Both pilots and 16 passengers died when the Air India Express Boeing 737-800 aircraft had crash landed in Calicut. The flight was operating under the Vande Bharat Mission to being back Indians stranded abroad because of the coronavirus lockdown.
A team from Boeing, the manufacturer of the aircraft will visit India next week to help in the investigations and will visit the crash site as well.
The table-top runway at Kozhikode was audited, Kumar said. The authorities are now discussing the possibility of installation of a crash barrier system for large aircraft and an attempt is being made to extend the runway, he added.