TransAsia Airways on Wednesday offered to pay a compensation of NT$14.9 million ($472,807) for each person killed in last week’s crash of its Flight GE 235. However, the amount was reportedly rejected by relatives of the victims, who were dissatisfied with the amount and the "method" of payment.
The offer included emergency relief funds of NT$200,000 (US$6,300), which has already been given to the affected families, along with a funeral allowance of NT$1.2 million (US$38,000), Taiwan’s Central News Agency (CNA) reported. The plane, which had taken off from Taiwan’s Songshan Airport with 58 people on board, had crashed into the Keelung River, minutes after takeoff. Last year, TransAsia had offered a similar compensation deal to families who lost their relatives when its Flight 222 crashed in July.
"We offered an amount of TW$14.9 million as compensation for each person who died in the accident. We hope to reach a settlement with the families," a spokesperson for TransAsia told Agence France-Presse (AFP), adding: "We can fully understand that it would be hard for the families to accept it immediately. Still we hope the representatives could take the proposal back and take it into consideration."
The compensation was announced even as investigators are still probing into the cause of the incident. The ATR 72-600 plane's pilot reportedly relayed the message, “engine flameout,” to the control tower minutes before the crash, the recovered transcript showed.
Officials from the Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA) have so far said that 42 people died in the Feb. 4 crash, while 15 were injured. One person is still missing, CNA reported. The CAA had also ordered that all 71 of TransAsia's ATR pilots take a proficiency test, including an oral test on basic operation and emergency procedure. Ten failed while 19 others did not appear for the tests, and all 29 have been suspended.