I read about several aircraft crashes throughout aviation history and the investigations on wikipedia and also checked out some episodes of the documentary "Air Crash Investigation".
While of course I can only make conclusions of what I read, hear and see it appears, that problems related to communication are one typical reason to contribute to such disasters.
Something that attracted my attention is that the sidesticks used in the aircrafts of Airbus seem to be involved in not less than three crashes including Air France Flight 447.
Though there is the general distinction pilot flying (PF) and pilot not flying (PNF) failures, malfunctions and the triggered warnings tend to create a situation of stress and strain in the cockpit as comprehensible. Confusion comes up not seldom in such situations.
My point finally is, that
Sidesticks are smaller than yokes. To apply a control input one only needs to turn one's wrist while a yoke requires you to use both of your arms to make the big aircraft turn. I wonder if the inhibition threshold therefore is somehow lower to make extreme, exaggerated inputs in case of a sidestick?
Secondly, and this is the major question, as it appears, the sidesticks make it much harder, to be aware of the currently applied control input (especially) for the other pilot. While the yokes of both pilots are physically connected and both pilots have direct feedback of the currents state at any given time, the sidesticks
- give no feedback to the other sidestick
- are smaller, which makes it harder to see the current state their in already by the size alone
- are more distant than yokes making it again harder to see for the other pilot, as this A380 cockpit shot shows
How is the general assessment of those sidesticks concerning safety?
Is there any feedback to the pilots which stick is giving what input?
Has there been any development in improving this situation?
What are the accidents/incidents sidesticks more or less contributed to confusion/lack of information?