The Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) has cautioned Nigeria’s biggest carrier, Air Peace, for failing to report a hard landing incident involving one of its flights recently.
The agency said that this has been the fashion of some domestic airlines that fail to report similar incidents involving their flights.
In a statement signed by its spokesman, Tunji Oketunbi, AIB said, “Accident Investigation Bureau wishes to express its displeasure over the persistent failure of some airlines to report accidents or serious incidents to the Bureau as mandated by law.
“On June 5, 2019, the Bureau received notification about a serious incident involving a Boeing 737-300 aircraft with registration marks 5N-BUK, belonging to Air Peace Limited from a passenger onboard. It was reported that the said incident occurred on Wednesday, May 15, 2019, while the aircraft was on approach to Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos from Port Harcourt. The aircraft was said to have experienced a hard landing as it touched down on the runway (18R).”
According to the statement, upon receipt of the notification, the Bureau visited Air Peace Limited office and confirmed the said occurrence, noting that the hard landing affected one of the aircraft’s tyres and the right-hand engine compressor blades.
But reacting to the allegation, the Chairman of Air Peace, Allen Onyema said that when the incident happened the airline reported to the regulatory agency, the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) and also wrote to the aircraft manufacturer, Boeing and the manufacturer of the aircraft’s engine, CPM International.
“When the incident occurred, we reported it to NCAA. We followed the aircraft manual, which guided us on what to do when such incident occurred. We wrote to Boeing, the aircraft manufacturer, and also wrote to the engine manufacturer, CPM International. We also grounded the aircraft.
“We always report any incident to NCAA and sometimes you may not know what to report to AIB because the NCAA is the regulatory authority and the Bureau is in charge of accident investigation. So, when incident like hard landing happens and we inform NCAA, we feel we have followed the procedure. Boeing has written back to us and has told us what to do, according to the procedure, currently inspection is being carried out on the aircraft,” Onyema explained.
AIB confirmed in the statement that Air Peace grounded the aircraft after the incident, awaiting implementation of the hard landing inspections recommended by the aircraft manufacturer and the Boeing Company.
AIB said its grouse was that it did not receive any notification of the incident from Air Peace three weeks after the incident “contrary to ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organisation) Annex 13, which guides the operations of aircraft accident investigation procedures.”