The Accident Investigation Bureau, Nigeria (AIB-N) has disclosed that it expended about $1 million on the training and retraining of its investigators in 2019. The Bureau has also trained 10 investigators on the use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV), popularly referred to as drone, in a bid to ensure data accuracy and enhancement of accident investigation by the agency.
Speaking recently at the closing ceremony of the Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) training for investigators, held at University of Lagos (UNILAG) Consult, Olateru said the agency would not relent on its efforts to enhance capacity building, not just for the industry, but for the country at large.
Olateru explained that in 2019 alone, the AIB trained its investigators in the United Kingdom, United States and several other countries around the world and vowed that the management would continue to invest in human capacity in order to increase the safety of the airspace.
He noted that since the current management came onboard a few years ago, they have raised the profile of AIB from a sleeping agency to a more vibrant one, noting that management had also improved the equipment, infrastructure, training and welfare for staff, while it had a new Condition of Service (CoS) approved for its staff.
Olateru hinted that the training was the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) approved RPAS training according to the advisory circular GAD-AC-002B, which has been formed in line with the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) RPAS Operations Document 10019, Section 8.4.31 internationally and the NCAA General advisory GAD-AC-002 Section 4.7/ Appendix E29 locally.
He said the document was currently under extensive review by NCAA.
Olateru emphasised that drone technology has become critical to modern aircraft accident investigation, listing its benefits to include first responder capability, on-time post-crash site preservation capability, gathering, preservation and analysis of crash site evidence, 3D modelling capability and accurate and complete wreckage diagram through site mapping capability.