Date: November 27, 2008
Time: 1700
Location: Off Perpignan, France
Operator: XL Airways leased from Air New Zealand
Flight #: 888T
Route: Training
AC Type: Airbus A320-232
Registration: D-AXLA
cn / ln: 2500
Aboard: 7   (passengers:0  crew:7)
Fatalities: 7   (passengers:0  crew:7)
Ground: 0
Summary: The Airbus A320 was leased by XL Airways of Germany since May 2006. The plane was scheduled to be returned to its owner, Air New Zealand. The plane was ferried to Perpignan, France where it underwent maintenance at EAS Industries. During a second test flight, on approach to Perpignan, at 3,500 feet, radio contact was lost. A controller reported seeing the plane descending quickly in a left bank. The aircraft soon after crashed into the sea and broke up. While attempting to test slowing the airplane to an unsafe speed, the plane's computer failed to automatically recover to safe flight, The plane stalled and crashed. The reason the computer failed was that both angle-of-attack sensors were frozen.The reason water froze in the sensors was the plane had been washed using a firehose without protecting the sensors.

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