It Will Take Two Years To Determine Cause Of Helicopter Crash That Killed Wigwe, Others -- NSIB

2024-02-12 15:13:39

The Whistler Nigeria

The Nigerian Safety Investigation Bureau (NSIB) has estimated that it will take between 18 to 24 months to conclude investigation of the Airbus Helicopter EC130B4 crash that led to the demise of the Group Chief Executive Officer of Access Holdings, Herbert Wigwe and five others.

NSIB said it has initiated a collaborative effort to work with the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), on the matter.

The NTSB is the counterpart agency in the United States charged with fulfilling the same function as the NSIB.

Other parties to the investigation are Aaron Sauer who is the investigator in charge, supported by Mark Ward as the deputy investigator in charge, Orbic Air, LLC, and the FAA.

The NSIB said, "The duration of the accident investigation being conducted by NTSB is expected to take approximately 18 to 24 months to complete.

"The actual duration depends on many factors. Each investigator carries a caseload of many accident investigations which they work on concurrently and each investigation presents its unique complexities.

"The ongoing discussion between the NSIB and NTSB has highlighted the diligent investigation efforts of the NTSB. NTSB investigators were present at the crash scene in Halloran Springs, California, on Saturday to collect evidence and conduct initial on-scene documentation. The documentation process included aerial mapping of the wreckage with a drone and site measurements.

"Correspondence between the NSIB and NTSB further revealed that the NTSB investigation into the crash is being led by Aaron Sauer as the investigator in charge, supported by Mark Ward as the deputy investigator in charge. Several other NTSB investigators will also be examining various aspects of the accident, including airworthiness and maintenance structures, operations, meteorology, and air traffic control."

The NSIB said the airworthiness investigation group initiated a meticulous examination of the debris field, which spans approximately 100 yards.

The Bureau said all significant components of the helicopter, including the main transmission, engine, and various avionic elements, were identified and accounted for at the accident site.

The Bureau added, "In tandem, the operations investigation group has commenced gathering crucial company information, including pilot records, flight dispatch records, and aircraft maintenance records. Moving forward, coordination is underway by the NTSB to transfer the wreckage to a secure location on Tuesday for in-depth examination and analysis scheduled. Parties to the investigation include Orbic Air, LLC, and the FAA.

"As the investigation continues, other parties could be named. Additionally, the Bureau of Enquiry and Analysis for Civil Aviation Safety (BEA), the French aviation accident investigation agency, will also serve as an accredited representative, due to France being the state of manufacturer for the Airbus helicopter and Turbomeca Engine. Both Airbus Helicopters and Turbomeca Engines will serve as technical advisors to the investigation.

"The Nigerian Safety Investigation Bureau reaffirms its commitment to collaborate fully with the National Transportation Safety Board, aiming for a thorough and conclusive investigation that will enhance transport safety in both Nigeria and the United States.

"The Airbus Helicopter EC130B4 crash has brought a colossal loss to our dear nation Nigeria. Our hearts go out to the Wigwe and Ogunbanjo families and loved ones affected by this tragedy. We extend our deepest sympathies to them during this difficult time."

2024-02-12 News