Helicopter crash: Full investigation commences with black box recovery, says AIB
The Commissioner, Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB), Dr Felix Abali on Friday said that full investigation to unravel the cause of the Bristow helicopter crash would now get underway with the recovery of its black box.
Abali spoke with aviation correspondents while displaying the device at the bureau’s headquarters in Lagos.
The Sikosky 76 helicopter marked 5N-BGD, crashed into the Lagos lagoon as it approached its destination at the Murtala Muhammed Airport, in Ikeja.
Six of the 12 passengers on board the helicopter died while six others were rescued and taken to hospital for treatment.
Abali said that the AIB would download information from the black box and analyse it, which would help it in getting its report before making it public.
“We are still in custody of these two devices and we will take them to our laboratory in Abuja.
“The information will be downloaded before it is analysed to retrieve vital information in preparation for the final report.
“The flight data recorder will show us the speed, altitude of the helicopter, while the cockpit voice recorder will reveal the conversation between the pilots and the control tower in Lagos,” he said.
Abali said that he could not be definite on when the investigation would be concluded as it could take any dimension.
“Like any other investigation, we cannot give a specific time-line as it can take any twists and turns.
“All we can do to hasten the investigation is that we have competent investigators that will do their best, but we cannot tell when we will finish the report,” he said.
Abali said that investigation had been extended to retrieving documents and other materials from Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) and the airline operator.
He said that other information would be released to the public as they unfold and according to International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Annexe 13.
The commissioner had earlier announced the recovery of the flight recorders, popularly known as black box, of the ill-fated Bristow helicopter.
Abali said that the search party, led by Julius Berger, with the assistance of a hired diver, located the recorders.
The flight recorder, also called black box contains the Cockpit Voice Recorder (CVR) and the Flight Data Recorder (FDR).
The biggest part of the wreckage of the ill-fated aircraft was recovered on Thursday but without the black box which was eventually found on Friday.o