Friday, July 12, 2013

► GHANA: Report claims pilot error partly to blame for the 2012 Allied Air Cargo 727F crash in Accra.

GCAAThe chairman of the investigative committee for the June 2, 2012 crash of a Nigerian Allied Air (4W) cargo B727-200F (MSN  22540 | 5N-BJN) at Accra Kotoka International Airport which killed 10 people on the ground, has presented the final report to the Ghanaian Ministry of Transport for consideration. Among the findings by Captain Alec Grant Sam and his committee are that the pilots of the 727 "were partly to blame" for the accident, having touched down too far along runway 21 to allow them to stop safely.

The crash site showing wreckage and casualties
The crash site showing wreckage and casualties (AFP)
According to The Aviation Herald's account, on the night of June 2, the freighter, operating as flight DHV-3 on behalf of DHL Aviation Africa enroute from Lagos, Nigeria to Accra with 4 crew aboard, overran runway 21 after landing before smashing through the airport perimeter destroying the Instrument Landing System Localiser Bars. It then came to a rest near the El Wak Sports Stadium at the Hajj village at about 19:10L. 

The 4 Nigerian crew were taken to a local hospital. 

However, twelve people in transit on Giffard Road, near the touchdown zone for runway 03, including all 10 occupants of a passing bus, a passenger in a taxi cab and a soldier riding a bike, were killed with a number of injured taken to a hospital. 

The aircraft received substantial damage and was beyond repair; all gear had collapsed, the right wing was damaged due to impact with the bus, the tail plane separated from the aircraft and the tail fractured.

According to Ghana's Daily Graphic, in his findings, Captain Sam explained that the Boeing 727 landed with a speed of 154 knots and "6'000 feet down the runway; far past the prescribed maximum of 1'000 feet."

Runway 03/21 is 11'165ft (3'403m) long .

In a bizarre twist of fate, Captain Sam also noted that the driver of the bus, in a moment of impatience, had "overtaken an Opel car which could not start its engine when the traffic lights were green", only to crash into the plane. He was of the view that if the driver had waited for a few more minutes, the unfortunate incident could have been avoided.

He said the investigative team made a number of recommendations including that of the erection of barriers to prevent airplanes running off the runway. He added that the airplane’s insurance company was providing aid to the relatives of the dead.

Receiving the Report, the Ghanaian Minister for Transport, Ms Dzifa Ativor, expressed her appreciation to the committee and pledged to study the Report for necessary action, adding that the report would help the Ministry initiate some corrective measures to prevent such occurrences in the near future.