Black Boxes Of Crashed Helicopter Retrieved
• Airline Explains Delay In Release Of Manifest
THE Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) announced yesterday that the flight recorders, popularly known as black boxes, of the Sikosky 76 helicopter which crashed into the Oworonshoki area of the Lagos Lagoon on Wednesday, August 12, this year has been recovered.
The helicopter, marked 5N-BGD and operated by Bristow Helicopters, was believed to have departed SEDCO oil platform offshore and crashed shortly before landing at Murtala Mohammed Airport in Ikeja, Lagos.
Bristow Helicopters has explained that the delay in the release of the aircraft manifest was because it was yet to finish informing the family members of the victims of the ill-fated plane.
The search party, led by Messrs Julius Berger Construction Company, with the assistance of a hired diver, located the recorders which are expected to assist the investigators in unraveling the cause of the accident in which four passengers and two crew members were killed.
Six other injured passengers are receiving treatment at a private hospital. The Flight Data Recorder (FDR) contains data generated from different parts of the aircraft, including the engines and the avionics, while the Cockpit Voice Recorder (CVR) would unveil conversations within the cockpit and between the pilots and the Control Tower (CT).
The biggest part of the wreckage of the ill-fated aircraft was recovered on Thursday without the black boxes and the search was resumed yesterday.
According to AIB, investigation has extended to retrieving documents and other materials from the NCAA, Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) and the airline operator.
According to Head, Public Affairs of AIB, Tunji Oketumbi, further information would be released to the public as they unfold and according to International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Annexe 13.
Meanwhile, the Director General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Capt. Muhtar Usman, called on all public relations and information managers of all the aviation agencies, local and foreign airlines to do a critical review of information dissemination during accidents and incidents.
Speaking during the maiden meeting of all the information managers in the industry, Usman urged the information managers present to tinker with the subsisting approach of information flow when there is an accident or incident.
Usman called for an integrated and unified approach among all information managers during emergencies. “We should put on the table a synergy and a robust working relationship within this group.
When I say all of you, this includes the public relations apparatchik of NCAA. “If we commence integrated information, there will be a concerted approach when there are accidents and incidents.
On the reality, airline operations worldwide are not without their fair share of incidents,” he said. The DG said the public character of aviation imposes on it a dual role, adding that commercial airlines should advance their private interests, stimulate growth and compete in the realms of operations and within the stipulates of NCAA’s regulations.
Usman assured Nigerians that NCAA would continue to progressively strengthen oversight responsibilities to entrench safe and secure air transportation in the country.
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