Apuseni crash: conflicting information, reports with no result

The latest information on Apuseni Mountains tragedy are conflicting. Whereas the Special Telecommunication Service (STS) claim they provided the coordinates for the search area, the Emergency Situations Inspectorate (ISU) say they had precise information regarding the aircraft localization from the STS themselves. However, the ISU Cluj employees could not decipher them as they were sent in an unknown format. Even more severe, the flight controllers did not know how to interpret the data provided from a survivor’s cell phone.
Tuesday night, Minister of Transports Ramona Manescu said that, from her point of view included in a ministry report as well, the statement that STS sent erroneous coordinates for the aircraft crash in Apuseni Mountains is a “speculation.” Inquired whether she finds no fault with herself, considering that ROMATSA is under her ministry, she replied: “What fault would you want me to find as far as I am concerned so long as I tell you ROMATSA did what they believed to be necessary, we have taken the administrative measures, the PM deemed it necessary and it was a unanimous decision to punish ROMATSA leaders administratively, those who were responsible with the coordination of the search and rescue mission that particular day,” adding that her resignation has not been requested by now, following the manner the accident was managed. She said the localization could not be made through the ROMATSA systems because the antenna sending signal on 406 MHz, which could provide the localization through the system in Moscow, was broken during the impact, which made the rescue mission harder.
Manescu added that the conditions were not met to summon the ministerial committee in the case of the Apuseni accident, as this committee meets the moment “an accident causes impairments of the transport infrastructure, major damages with social and economic impact.” She said this committee has not yet been summoned for an accident by now.
Hearings at the Senate defence commission
Chairman of the Senate Defence Commission Corneliu Dobritoiu said on Wednesday that the commission members will analyze the intervention to rescue the victims of the aircraft accident in Apuseni, saying that the possibility of an investigation commission will also be approached. The leaders of the structures under the parliamentary control of the Senate Defence Commission, the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the Ministry of Defence and the STS, will be heard by the commission regarding the aircraft accident in the Apuseni Mountains. Inquired whether the hearings within the commission will take place the following week, Dobritoiu denied. “No, because we will analyze the legal background next week. By the request of the senators in the commission, we aim to extend the hearings upon all the leaders of structures controlled by the Defence Commission, national security and public order, Internal Affairs, Defence, STS,” said the liberal.
Inquired whether the ministers responsible in this case will be heard too, the senator confirmed, adding that they will insist more on the “presence of subordinates, the experts with authority in the institutions.” The question follows the fact that the General Prosecutor of the Court of Appeal Alba Iulia Augustin Lazar said on Tuesday night in Sibiu that, regarding the aircraft accident in the Apuseni Mountains, “there is a suspicion of blaming conduct from some people in the crisis committees, people in positions of ministers.”
Ponta asks for better coordination between ISU and STS
Premier Victor Ponta has asked Deputy Prime Minister Gabriel Oprea and secretary of state Raed Arafat to improve, by March 1, the procedures of collaboration between the Emergency Situations Inspectorate (ISU) and the 112 Single System, pointing out that these two systems are not managing to coordinate each other, Mediafax informs.
“It’s very clear that ISU on one hand and the 112 System on the other seem to not manage – we’ve seen coordination problems today too – and, by March 1, I want us to have the procedures improved and reworked so as to be better coordinated and better prepared in future situations,” Ponta said during the government meeting.
The intervention came against the backdrop in which a 44-year-old man from Buzau, who went missing during the heavy snow and blizzard, has yet to be found. According to Buzau County Police spokesperson chief commissioner Florina Crucianu, the searches for the man started on January 26, when his relatives called 112 and notified the authorities that the man had went missing during the heavy snow and blizzard. At the same time, in Constanta County, two men that had lost their way on a field because of the fog were found after well over 3 hours of searches because the ISU operator made some mistakes, ignoring their call for assistance in the first stage, according to STS spokesperson Adrian Fulea, quoted by Mediafax.

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