Chinedu Eze

The Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) yesterday released the preliminary report on serious incidents involving Delta Air Airbus A330-223 aircraft with registrationN858NW, which occurred after take-off from the Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Lagos on February 13, 2018.

The report indicated that the aircraft which airlifted 221 passengers with 13 crew members was duly certified for the flight operation; therefore it was airworthy before the take-off, but about seven minutes into the Lagos-Atlanta operation, it made air return back to the Lagos airport.

AIB said the flight crew were certified and qualified to conduct the flight in accordance with applicable United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations, but the number one engine fire warning came on about a minute after take-off, while the crew contacted air traffic control and declared emergency.

The report stated that the aircraft landed at about 2259hrs (11; 59p.m., Nigerian time) and stopped on runway 18R (international runway), where the Airport Rescue and Fire Fighting Service first reported observing smoke, and fire on the number one engine.

AIB also reported that there was evidence of fire within the engine cowling even as the two fire extinguishers on the engine were discharged.

“A commotion was reported onboard the aircraft before the evacuation.
“Investigation is still ongoing and further investigative actions may include engine examination, material testing for the fuel manifolds, engine oil and hydraulic lines, inspection of fuel manifolds for crack and inspection of fuel nozzle braze joints for leaks,” AIB said in a statement signed by its spokesman, Tunji Oketumbi.

The bureau also released the preliminary reports on the accident involving the Dana Air MD – 83 with registration number, 5N-SRI that overran the runway at the Port Harcourt International Airport on February 20, 2018, and the accident involving Gulfstream G200 aircraft belonging to Nest Oil with registration number 5N-BTF, which occurred at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, on January 25, 2018.

The agency said the Dana Air flight was cleared to land at the Port Harcourt International Airport, Omagwa, by the air traffic control, but the flight crew reported that the runway had experienced recent rain before arrival, and after touch down, looked and felt contaminated with flood of water that did not drain well.

“Other findings include the fact that after the aircraft came to a complete stop, emergency evacuation was carried out using only the left forward main door and the escape slide on this door did not deploy just as the Public Address System did not work.
“The Airport Rescue and Fire Fighting Service arrived during the evacuation and all persons onboard were evacuated unhurt,” AIB said.

On the Nesto Oil Gulfstream 200, AIB said it was notified at 1528hrs (3:38p.m. Nigerian time) by Abuja Air Traffic Control (ATC) January 25, 2018, of an accident involving a Gulfstream 200 (G200) with registration marking 5N-BTF, which took off from Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos (DNMM), at 1428hrs (2:28p.m. Nigerian time) operating a chartered flight service to Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport; Abuja (DNAA) with four passengers and three crew onboard.

AIB said findings confirmed that the crew were certified and qualified to conduct the flight; the aircraft was airworthy as at the time of the occurrence and there was no reported adverse weather during approach and landing into Abuja.

The agency also noted that the aircraft lost directional control during the landing roll and it veered off and rested on the right shoulder of the runway because its right main landing gear strut sheared off.