Friday, January 22, 2010

Probe blames pilot error for YSR chopper crash

Probe blames pilot error for YSR chopper crash/Probe blames pilot error for YSR chopper crash/Probe blames pilot error for YSR chopper crash/Probe blames pilot error for YSR chopper crash/ysr dead/

New Delhi: The late chief minister of Andhra Pradesh YS Rajashekhara Reddy was killed when the helicopter he was flying in crashed as the pilots lost the control because they were engrossed for six vital minutes in locating a flight manual.

The four member inquiry commission investigating the cause of helicopter crash that killed YSR along with four other people says that bad weather and strong winds forced the pilots into a descent they could not manage.

"The probable cause of the accident is – accident occurred due to loss of control resulting in uncontrolled descent in the terrain at a very high rate of descent due to entry into severe down draught," the report said.

According to the report the pilots were using flying instruments but their flight plan was cleared for Visual Flight Rules (VFR).

It also claims that the pilots on noticing a snag were engrossed for vital six minutes with the flight manual and were therefore distracted from the poor weather conditions.

Data recording shows that there was a snag in the helicopter and the pilots were busy for six minutes trying to rectify it looking at manuals and only lost vital time but also the control of the helicopter.

But interestingly even though the report does talk about a snag but it does not specify the kind of snag.

So it seems that pilot error was the reason behind the crash that the killed YSR, his special secretary P Subramaniam, Chief Security Officer ASC Weseley, and the two pilots Group Capt SK Bhatia and Captain MS Reddy.

The Bell 430 helicopter of the state government crashed in jungles of Nalamalla hills on September 2, 2009 and their bodies could only be located after nearly 24 hours of frantic search.

The four-member Committee of Inquiry was set up by the government a day after the crash and on the day that YSR was found dead. The committee headed by Pawan Hans Helicopters Limited CMD RK Tyagi included senior aviation and air safety experts.

The other members of Committee were Captain Irshad Ahmed, Flight Operations Inspector (FOI), O/o Directorate General of Civil Aviation, Sanjay Bramhane, Senior Air Safety Officer, Directorate of Air Safety, DGCA Mumbai with Maneesh Kumar, Deputy Director of Air Safety, DGCA as the Member Secretary of the Committee.