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AVIATION

AIB Frowns At Air Peace Over Failure To Report Incidents

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By ANTHONY AWUNOR, Lagos

The Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) has expressed its displeasure over the persistent failure of some airlines to report accidents or serious incidents to the Bureau as mandated by Law.

The Bureau stated that on the 5th of June 2019, it received notification about a serious incident involving a Boeing 737-300 aircraft with Registration Marks 5N-BUK, belonging to Air Peace Limited from a passenger onboard.

According to AIB, it was reported that the said incident occurred on Wednesday, 15th May 2019, while the aircraft was on approach to Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos from Port Harcourt.

The aircraft was said to have experienced a hard landing as it touched down on the runway (18R). Upon receipt of the notification, the Bureau visited Air Peace Limited office and confirmed the said occurrence.

The Bureau further conducted a damage assessment on the aircraft, which revealed that the aircraft made contact on the runway with the starboard engine cowling as obvious from various scrapes, scratches and dents, an evidence of tyre scouring on the sidewalls of the No. 4 tyre as well as bottoming of the main landing gear oleo struts. There was also visible damage to the right-hand engine compressor blades.

The aircraft has since been on ground, awaiting implementation of the hard landing inspections recommended by the aircraft manufacturer, the Boeing Company.

“Further discussions with the Maintenance Personnel of Air Peace Limited revealed that CFM International, the engine manufacturer, has also been contacted with regard to necessary inspections, to ascertain the serviceability of the starboard engine.

The nature of the damage suggest that, there was a high probability of an accident as captured in the definition of Serious Incidents in the Bureau’s Civil Aviation (Investigation of Air Accidents and Incidents) Regulations 2016”, AIB added.

Similarly, and in recent times, AIB stated that an aircraft belonging to Air Peace Limited was also involved in a serious incident and the airline willfully failed to comply with the provisions of the Bureau’s Regulations which provides that: “Subject to paragraph (2) below and regulation 14 where an accident or a serious incident which results in the withdrawal from service of an aircraft occurs in or over Nigeria, no person, other than an authorised person, shall have access to the aircraft involved and neither the aircraft nor its contents shall, except under the authority of the Commissioner, be removed or otherwise interfered with”.

“Where it is necessary to move aircraft wreckage, mail or cargo, sketches, descriptive notes, and photographs shall be made if possible, of the original positions and condition of the wreckage and any significant impact marks”, the agency noted. .

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