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The risk for the operator of employing two weight and balance profiles was that it increased the possibility of errors during operations.

The lack of an audit requirement affecting the newly created weight and balance profile, and the lack of a capability for an on-ground warning to the crew of an incorrectly loaded aircraft, meant that the operator's load control system relied on the recognition by the crew of any error in the aircraft's load profile. The investigation could not quantify the impact on workload caused by the requirement for the crew to calculate the aircraft's take-off performance7, but it may have precluded their critical analysis of the aircraft's weight and balance profile. In any case, in this instance, the company's reliance on crew intervention to prevent the application of the incorrect load profile proved unreliable.

The omission of an independent check of the aircraft's basic weight and index parameters by the company's Singapore load controllers negated another potential defence in the operator's load control system. In addition, the implied discretionary requirement in the Route Manual Supplement for flight crews to check flight critical data could have contributed to the apparent breakdown in the crew's loading preparations for the flight. Had either of the Singapore load controllers, or the flight crew more comprehensively followed company procedures, the error in the aircraft's weight and balance profile may have been detected prior to commencing the takeoff.

7. Using the aircraft's Performance Supplement Manual.

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