•No application letter received from Quorom Aviation -NCAA
The Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) has described the denial of its preliminary report by Quorum Aviation as unsubstantiated and false.
In a statement, the agency said claims made by Quorum, the operator of the crashed Bell 206B helicopter cannot be substantiated, insisting that it stands by facts as presented in the report released on Monday, September 12, 2020. The AIB had in its initial findings revealed that the Bell 206b helicopter had no capacity to jettison fuel and that there was no fuel left in the tanks after the crash even after the helicopter was topped to full tank capacity on August 27, 2020 at Port Harcourt.
The report also indicated that there was no evidence showing that the pilot had applied for exemption provided by the NCAA’s All Operators’ Letter AOL DG020/20 neither was there evidence of an application for the exemption provided by the AOL DG018/20 for proficiency check.
But Quorum Aviation faulted a portion of the preliminary report which stated that there was no evidence of submission of an application for exemption to the regulatory body by the operator.
But AIB responded to this objection in a statement, saying: “It is important to state that the objective of our investigations is to improve Aviation safety by determining the cause(s) and contributory factor(s) of an occurrence and to issue targeted safety recommendations to forestall future reoccurrence of such accidents or incidents.
“In accordance with the Civil Aviation Act 2006 and Annex 13 to the Convention on International Civil Aviation, AIB investigation shall not apportion blame or assist in determining liability.
“It is also important to note that AIB does not authenticate documents with the affected Operator but with the Regulatory body – the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), which is the custodian of all the certificates.
“The Bureau had stated in its preliminary report, that the pilot’s proficiency was valid till August 24, 2020, four days before the crash, while the medical certificate of the pilot expired on August 6, 2020.