South Africa News

Hilton KZN fatal aircraft accident to be investigated

The Accident and Incident Investigation Division has dispatched investigators to start the process of gathering information that will assist in establishing the cause or causes of a fatal aircraft accident that happened in Hilton in KwaZulu-Natal on Saturday afternoon, the 24th of October 2020.

Initial reports indicate that the aircraft, with two persons onboard, crashed moments after take-off fatally injuring both occupants.

The aeroplane, which is a light sports aircraft called Bushbaby, had taken-off from Eva’s Field, an airstrip in Hilton, and was heading for Umkomaas Airfield, which is situated at the south coast of KwaZulu-Natal.

The evidence collection phase, which has already begun, and will continue onsite, will define the size and scope of the investigation as well as the anticipated timeframe for the completion of a final accident investigation report.

It is vital to point out that investigations can vary in complexity and may at times take a bit of time to complete.

However, should a critical safety issue be identified during the course of the investigation, the investigating team will then immediately notify relevant parties so that appropriate action can be taken.

A preliminary report will be issued within 30 days from the day of this accident.

In instances where an investigation takes longer than 12 months to complete, the investigation team is expected to issue an interim statement to indicate the progress made at that particular point in time.

The completion of an investigation is marked by the release of a final accident report, which often contain safety recommendations aimed at improving the levels of aviation safety and the prevention of a similar accident.

In terms of Regulation 12.03.1 of the Civil Aviation Regulations (2011), an aircraft accident investigation report is compiled in the interest of the promotion of aviation safety and the reduction of the risk of aviation accidents or incidents and not to apportion blame or liability.

Therefore, the main purpose of an aircraft accident investigation is to establish the cause or the probable cause of an accident and, if necessary, to issue safety recommendation(s) that will help avoid recurrence of another accident as a result of the same cause(s).

-The Citizen

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