Poland Reveals Pilots at Fault for President’s Plane Crash

3 June 2010 (Last Updated June 3rd, 2010 18:30)

Pilots flying the Polish presidential plane that crashed on 10 April at Smolensk South Airport in western Russia ignored the Russian air traffic controller's repeated warnings not to land, according to transcripts published from the black box of the plane. Polish President Lech Kaczynski

Pilots flying the Polish presidential plane that crashed on 10 April at Smolensk South Airport in western Russia ignored the Russian air traffic controller's repeated warnings not to land, according to transcripts published from the black box of the plane.

Polish President Lech Kaczynski and 95 other passengers on board the Tupolev Tu-154 plane died in the accident.

The transcripts show the controller repeatedly asked the pilots not to land because of bad weather and then asked them to gain altitude fast because of terrain ahead, 16 minutes before the crash, according to the BBC.

The 41-page transcript also includes multiple warnings from an on-board terrain awareness and warning system.

Speculation has been raised that the Polish president, who was eager to attend a memorial ceremony of the 70th anniversary of the Katyn Massacre, might have pressured the pilot and co-pilot to land.