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Lagos Helicopter Crash: AIB Releases Preliminary Report

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The Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) has issued a preliminary report on how a Quorum Helicopter crashed into a building in Opebi, Lagos, on August 28, 2020.

According to the report, the helicopter had a valid certificate of airworthiness “but the pilot’s last medical examination was valid till the 6th of August 2020”.

It also stated, “there was no evidence to show that any application for the exemption provided by the All Operators’ Letter AOL DG020/20 had been submitted to the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority”.

It stated, “The helicopter with registration marks 5N-BQW, operated by Quorum Aviation Limited, was topped up with 247 litres of fuel to full tank capacity on ground Port Harcourt Military airport (DNPM).

“The technical logbook entry revealed that there was an engine run for 10 minutes and a test flight of 20 minutes in preparation for a positioning flight the next day.

“On 28th August 2020 at 09:15 h, 5N-BQW was started and at 09:20 h, the helicopter lifted off from DNPM as a ferry flight to EAN Aviation hangar, Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos (DNMM).

“The flight was operated on a Visual Flight Rules (VFR) flight plan. According to the flight plan, onboard were one pilot, an engineer and a fitter mechanic with fuel endurance of 3:15 h.”

Three men were in the helicopter which crashed. Two bodies were recovered at the accident scene and taken to the mortuary, while the third victim was taken to LASUTH, where he later died.

Findings

1.The Pilot’s last medical examination was valid till 6th August, 2020. There was no evidence to show that an application for the exemption provided by the All Operators’ Letter AOL DG020/20 had been submitted to the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority.

2. The Pilot’s last Proficiency Check was valid till 24th August 2020. There was no evidence to show that an application for the exemption provided by the AOL DG018/20 had been submitted to the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority.

3. The helicopter had a valid Certificate of Airworthiness.

4. The helicopter was topped to full tank capacity on 27th August, 2020.

5. After refuelling, 10 minutes of engine run and 20 minutes of test flight were carried out on 27th August, 2020 at Port Harcourt.

6. The helicopter was fitted with a range-extender fuel system.

7. No fuel jettisoning capability on this helicopter.

8. The helicopter has an endurance of 3:24 h.

9. The operational flight plan filed by the pilot indicated an endurance of 3:15 h and an estimated flight time of 2:45 h.

10.The helicopter engine was started at 09:15 h.

11.The helicopter took off at 09:20 h.

12.The helicopter crashed at 12:14 h.

13.There was no fuel left in the fuel tanks after the crash.

14. The mast and main rotor blades were found intact during the post-crash

Inspection.
It, however, said its investigation was still ongoing.

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