One month after Air Peace announced the commencement of Ilorin flight from Lagos and Abuja, an Ilorin bound aircraft belonging to the airline crash landed with scores of passenger and crew members on board.
The aircraft crash landed around 9.30am on Friday morning upon landing in Ilorin from Abuja.
However, following the incident, the runway of the Ilorin International Airport has been closed to traffic.
Speaking to LEADERSHIP, the Spokespersons, Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB), Tunji Oketunbi and Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority of Nigeria (NCAA), Sam Adurogboye, said they are not aware of the incident.
Recall that the Air Peace had on June 17 announced the commencement of Ilorin flight from Lagos and Abuja.
But, it was gathered that many passengers, including some highly-placed Nigerians narrowly escaped death when the aircraft crash landed with all flights to Ilorin canceled until the evacuation of the plane.
According to sources on the aircraft, the plane had tyre burst and a bang which affected the cabin with luggage falling off the passengers.
It was gathered that with the impact of the crash, the plane could not taxi, thereby causing the closure of the runway of the airport to traffic.
But all the traumatised passengers were successfully evacuated from the plane and the process of moving the plane from the runway was became slow because the aircraft involved is a bigger aircraft as there was no equipment to move it away from the tarmac.
Responding to LEADERSHIP enquiry, Oketumbi in a chat with our correspondent said he is yet to confirm the incident, adding that the Bureau doesn’t have personnel in all airports to monitor incident.
According to him, even if the incident was reported, it will take the Bureau some time to get to the airport because Ilorin Airport where it happened is a bit distant from Lagos.
He said, “Am trying to confirm from our people if it has been reported to them. Ilorin is a distance and we don’t have people at every airport. Even if it is reported, it will take us time to get there but let me confirm if something like that was reported,” he told our correspondent.
On his part, the spokesperson of NCAA said the incident was not unusual, noting that once the aircraft is in service, burst tyre is bound to happen.
When contacted, the spokesperson of Air Peace, Stanley Olisa, confirmed the incident saying the airline landed safely but had a burst tyre while taxing.
He further stated that the incident had been reported to appropriate authorities as statutorily required by aviation requirement.
He said, “There is nothing like our aircraft crash landed but rather, it landed safely and had a burst tyre while taxing. Passengers disembarked safely and seamlessly.”
“Also, the tyre has been fixed and aircraft moved away from the runway. This has been reported to the relevant authority as statutorily required,” Olisa said.