The Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) is set to release the real cause of the helicopter crash involving Vice President Yemi Osinbajo in Kogi state in February 2019.
The Agusta Westland 139 chopper with registration number 5N-CML owned and operated by Caverton Helicopters Limited had crash-landed at Kabba stadium. The chopper had on board Osinbajo and 11 others including the crew members.
Apart from the Osinbajo’s Caverton Helicopter crash, the bureau also said that it would release final reports on nine other accidents, dating back to 2008 and a few ones that occurred in 2019.
Commissioner/CEO of the AIB, Engr. Akin Olateru, told newsmen at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Lagos that the 10 reports including that of Osinbajo would be released in the first quarter of 2020.
It would be recalled that AIB had released preliminary report on February 13, 11 days after the incident, blaming the crash on failure to carry out the risk assessment of the Kaba stadium in the flight plan.
But the final report is expected to lay bare the real cause of the crash where all the occupants including the VP escaped unhurt.
Olateru disclosed that when the 10 reports are released in 2020, the current management would have released 65 per cent of accident reports in the public domain since 2007 when the agency was established.
He said: “In the next 90 days, we will be releasing final reports of accidents in the last 12 years. We have the vice president’s helicopter crash, Kabo, Chanchangi and some others. We have a 737-200 in 2008. We have concluded investigation on the accidents.
“Some of these reports have gone to stakeholders for the 60-day review while others will be going for the stakeholders’ review.”
The Commissioner said the delay in quick release of accident reports in the past has not helped the industry in deepening the safety practices as accident investigations and reports were meant to forestall a recurrence.
He, however, expressed delight that things have changed even as he commended the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), for ensuring compliance to implementation of AIB’s reports by relevant stakeholders.
“Airlines are wise because they know the effect of non-compliance of these safety recommendations. It’s a win-win situation for everyone and the industry at large will benefit,” he added.
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