The Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) Nigeria has released the preliminary reports on serious incidents involving three aircraft owned and operated by Air Peace Limited.
The preliminary reports are not the final reports as they contain details of the initial facts, discussions and findings surrounding the occurrences; which include information gathered from witness statements, flight recorders, Health and Usage Monitoring System (HUMS) Data, Flight Data Monitoring (FDM) data, and preliminary inspection of the accident sites and the wreckages.
Therefore, the investigations on these serious incidents are still ongoing and final reports on these occurrences will be released at the conclusion of these investigations.
The reports released by AIB included the serious incident involving Air Peace Limited B737-300 aircraft with nationality and registration marks 5N-BUK at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos on May 15, 2019.
AIB also released the report on the serious incident involving the airline’s B737-500 aircraft with nationality and registration marks 5N-BRN at Port Harcourt International Airport, Port Harcourt on June 22, 2019.
Also released is the report on the serious incident involving Air Peace Limited B737-300 aircraft with nationality and registration marks 5N-BQO at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos on July 23, 2019.
The Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) has released a preliminary report of an investigation into the helicopter crash involving Agusta Westland W 139 Caverton Helicopters which flew Vice President Yemi Osinbajo to Kabba in Kogi State.
In the report released on Wednesday, the AIB said the crew lost visual contact with the ground at about 50 feet owing to a brownout – (dust generated when landing on a sandy area) – that enveloped the helicopter.
According to the agency, the helicopter experienced a hard landing and consequently rolled over.
While the AIB says the investigation into the crash is still ongoing, the Commissioner and Chief Executive Officer, Akin Olateru, gave two safety recommendations to the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) and the operator, Caverton Helicopters Limited.
Olateru asked the NCAA to issue an advisory circular to helicopter operators on the effects of brown out and how to mitigate its effects.
Secondly, he asked Caverton Helicopters to carry out proper risk analysis and assessment before operating flights into unapproved landing pad.
The chopper carrying the Vice President, his entourage and three crew members, had crash-landed at the Kaaba Stadium on February 2.
The Federal Government has commenced investigation into the accident involving an airline operated by Dana Airline.
The investigation is being carried out by the Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB).
AIB under the Federal Ministry of Transportation is set up to investigate any civil aircraft accident and serious incident in Nigerian airspace. It is aimed at improving aviation safety by determining the circumstances and causes of air accidents in Nigeria.
The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has also heightened safety oversight over the operator after the accident.
The investigation by AIB is in accordance with the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Annex 13.
Spokesperson of the Ministry of State, Aviation James Odaudu, said this in a statement made available to Channels Television on Wednesday. He said efforts are in place to continuously enhance safety and security in the aviation sector.
“Efforts are in place to continuously enhance Safety and Security in our industry in accordance with the reformation agenda of the Buhari Administration for the aviation sector,” the statement read in part.
The Ministry aviation in the statement also sympathised with the passengers on the aircraft over the traumatic experience and assures that the Federal Government will not falter in its commitment to the safety and security of lives and property in the Nigerian airspace.
The plane belonging to Dana Air on Tuesday, February 20 was involved in an accident. This was after it overshot the runway in Port Harcourt Airport while flying from the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in the nation’s capital Abuja.
The aircraft had the following details: 5N-SRI, flight number: 0348, Type: MD 83. 54 passengers were on board including five crew members. Everyone on board were evacuated safely and no reported casualties. The weather condition was rainy.
The Airport was thereafter closed briefly for safety reasons. It was reopened after proper assessment on Wednesday morning.
President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday approved the appointments of four persons to head some key agencies in Nigeria’s aviation sector.
The approval was made public in a statement signed by the Permanent Secretary at the Federal Ministry of Aviation, Sabiu Zakari.
The affected agencies are: Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA), Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NIMET), Nigerian College of Aviation Technology (NCAT), Zaria, as well as the Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB).
Captain Fola C. Akinkuotu, who is a seasoned transport pilot, flight and aircraft maintenance engineer, airline chief executive and a trained aviation industry regulator, has been appointed the Director General of NAMA.
The Deputy Vice Chancellor at the University of Abuja, and a professor of geography with specialty in Environmental Application of Remote Sensing, Sani Abubakar Mashi, becomes the Director General of NIMET.
According to the statement, Captain Abdulsalam Mohammed is the new Rector at NCAT, while Mr Akinola Olateru is the Commissioner for AIB.
Captain Mohammed is an alumnus of NCAT and a renowned civil aviation trainer and examiner with accreditation by the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority and the Federal Civil Aviation Administration.
Mr Olateru, on his part, is an engineer of international repute, a trained air accident manager and a certified safety officer with aircraft maintenance engineering licences in Nigeria, USA and the United Kingdom.
All eleven passengers and crew members on board the Bristow Helicopter enroute Lagos from Port Harcourt have been rescued alive.
The aircraft A 5N BJQ, Bristow Helicopter flying at 1,500 feet with nine passengers was earlier reported missing.
The South-west spokesperson for the National Emergency Management Agency NEMA, Mr Ibrahim Farinloye says that rescue operatives hit the ground running when they heard about the helicopter’s distress.
The regulatory body, Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) in its comment explained that the helicopter made what it called a “controlled landing” after it became obvious it was experiencing difficulties on air.
Channels Television is blazing the trail yet again and on this occasion with an eye on the continent.
At a conference organised by the Association for International Broadcasting, AIB, and Channels Television in London on Thursday, the station’s Chairman/CEO, Mr John Momoh, called for a stronger synergy towards the planned digital migration for 2015.
Towards seizing the opportunities in the African media landscape, he said: “This is the time for us to seize the day in Africa and we believe that Channels Television has what it takes to be part of what promises to be a successful broadcast industry in the continent.”
As the digital migration set for 2015 unfolds, media content and service delivery, plus deficits in skilled manpower, have been identified to constrain the industry, and the CEO, African Media Initiative, Amadou Mahtar Ba believes that “small content producers can team up together and come up with something totally powerful.”
Mr Momoh and his counterparts also agreed that opportunities for media engagement in the continent were not being deployed for development, owing to several factors limiting the growth of the broadcast industry with Mr George Twumasi of the African Broadcasting Network also saying: “We have to stop thinking about the limitations we impose on Africa; if the content is good, Africans will buy it.”
With over 50 countries across the continent, access to information should be a top strategy for economic growth. Africans are best positioned to tell their own story. However, an integrated media network is lacking and Mr Momoh revealed Channels Television’s eye on a pan African news network, a revolution which he says calls for partnerships.
“My vision is to work with like-minded colleagues within Nigeria, in Africa and across the globe to create an enabling environment and consortium that would result in the establishment of a credible news and factual programming based television network with intent to enlighten through entertainment, (and) the establishment of low-cost free view DTH (Direct To Home) platform which millions across Nigeria and Africa will be able to afford,” he said.
This vision explains the signing of a news partnership agreement between Channels Television and the Voice of America for free flow of news and information, as well as joint collaborations.
The conference, holding at the New Zealand House, London, was a convergence of top notch broadcasters and communications experts, including the Chief Executive, Association for International Broadcasting, Simon Spanswick, who noted that “Channels TV has played a big part in revolutionizing African television and Nigerian television in particular.”
The Director-General of the National Broadcasting Commission, Emeka Mba, was also present at the conference and he foresees a more prosperous media industry in the digital broadcast era.
The Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) on Saturday officially released to the public over 20 aircraft accident reports. The reports, posted on the AIB website (www.aib.gov.ng) include the October 22, 2005 mishap of Bellview Airlines Flight 210 in Lisa, Ogun State, which killed all 117 passengers on board.
The reports also included those involving Sosoliso in Port-Harcourt airport in 2005 where over a hundred school children of the prestigious Loyola Jesuit College and a popular preacher, Bimbo Odukoya met their death.
For the Sosoliso crash, the weather reports obtained from the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NIMET), and the one compiled from the satellite imagery by the Boeing aircraft company (USA), showed that there was a change in the wind speed and direction when the aircraft was approaching the station.
Other reports are AIB interim report on Beechcraft 1900D accident at Bushi village in Obanlinku local government of Cross River State on march 15, 2008, report on the accident to Boeing 737 aircraft registered 5N-AUA that crashed at the new Kaduna airport on November 13, 1995, the 2008 Nigeria police force’s Bell 412 helicopter and the September 7th accident involving DHL, registration ZS-DPF, at Murtala Muhammed international airport, Ikeja, Lagos and on the accident involving Tampico club 9 aircraft, reg. 5N-CBF at Zaria, Kaduna state on October 10, 2006, among others.
The AIB had concluded its investigations on the air calamities and came up with the reports, but successive Ministers of Aviation had failed to make the reports public.
The AIB, based at the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Ikeja, Lagos, carried out the investigations in accordance with Annex 13 to the Convention on International Civil Aviation, the Nigerian Civil Aviation Act 2006, and Civil Aviation (Investigation of Air Accidents and Incidents) Regulations.
Hence, it stated that in accordance with Annex 13 to the Convention on International Civil Aviation, it is not the purpose of aircraft accident/serious incident investigations to apportion blame or liability.
It advised readers that the AIB investigates for the sole purpose of enhancing aviation safety, and consequently, “its reports are confined to matters of safety significance and should not be used for any other purpose.”
It added that, “recommendations in this report are addressed to the regulatory Authorities of the state (NCAA),” and “it is for this authority to decide what action is taken.”
A witness at the on-going Coroner’s inquest into the Dana Air Crash, Alexander Omaghomi, has said the negligence and failure of the flight crew to adhere to required emergency guidelines led to the tragedy.
Mr Omaghomi also known as Captain Tito said he had more than 32 years’ experience as a Pilot on Thursday told the Coroner, Magistrate Oyetade Komolafe, that his opinion of the preliminary report of the Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) was that the pilot and his crew failed to keep to necessary checklists to prevent the fatalities of the air crash.
Omaghomi, a pilot with the defunct Nigerian Airways while being led in evidence by Femi Falana, explained that checklists are items and actions you take in the operations of a flying plane.
The former pilot who retired from flying commercial planes in 1993 said his analysis of the AIB report on the Dana Air crash was that the cockpit was a “a disorganised cockpit” and that the plane “became a flight that nobody had controlled.”
According to him, the pilot did not call for help when he should have done, that is at the time when the plane had already lost two engines.
He further stated that the rules are that no pilot flies for more than 100 hours in a month.
He observed that the pilot of the ill-fated plane had put in 120 hours of flight within 14 days. This was illegal, he said.
Omaghomi lamented that there were only 17 accidents between 1965-2003 while there has been almost 21 air mishaps from 2003 till date.
Earlier, an Aviation Operations Manager with Total Nigeria PLC, Daniel Akpokoje had testified that the last time Dana Air bought fuel from his company was November last year.
He stated that before fuel is supplied to an aircraft, several checks are normally made to ensure that there are no sediments or water mixed with it.
The Coroner adjourned hearings till August 13th in consideration for relatives, who are now collecting the remains of their loved ones who died in the crash.
The Coroner is conducting an inquest into the cause of the crash.
According to Mr Usidamen, the engine failure which occurred in 2010 was as a result of a bird’s strike.
He stated that when the company discovered that the engine was bad, the plane returned to safety to change the engine to ensure a secured flight.
Answering questions from the Coroner on how many times the airline had this issue with the plane, the Dana Air official said he was not in a position to say and could not ascertain if the plane was safe to embark on the journey of the 3rd of June.
The witness also denied knowledge of the name of the engineer who certified the air worthiness of the plane just as he also denied that the plane had a hydraulic lick before the crash.
With such response, the Coroner threatened to arrest him if he continued to evade questions and he was subsequently compelled to give the name of the flight engineer who certified the plane.
Magistrate Komolafe declared that the engineer would be invited to answer questions at the inquest especially as the witness testified that the plane was in good condition and had actually made two trips before it crashed on its third trip.
An official of Dana airlines a day after the crash confirmed to Channels Television that the ill-fated Dana Air flight 0992, was faulty and the owners of the airline threw caution to the wind and insisted that the plane must fly in a bid to maximise profit .
Another witness from the Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB), Engineer Emmanuel Dialla told the Coroner that the cockpit voice recorder retained 31 minutes of the flight’s conversation adding that from the records, the flight crew became worried about the condition of the plane as early as 10 minutes into the flight.
The inquest continues on the 6th of August when the witness is expected to conclude his testimony.
The Minister of Aviation is also expected to appear at the inquest next week.