Nigeria, Ghana begin investigation into Arik Air incident




…as Olateru urges Nigerians to download AIB Apps to aid incidents reportage


By Sade Williams


Air accidents investigation authorities in Nigeria and Ghana have begun probe into a serious incident which occurred on Arik Air Flight W3304 between Lagos and Accra.


Commissioner,  Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB), Engr. Akinola Olateru made this known in a statement on Friday in Lagos, stressing that the incident was classified as ‘serious’.


“This is to confirm that the incident occurred and it is classified as ‘serious incident’ in accordance with the ICAO Annex 13.


“AIB sincerely wishes to acknowledge and thank the concerned passenger(s) that reported the occurrence on social media, for being socially conscious citizen(s), and assure him/them and the flying public alike, that the institutions lawfully charged with the responsibility of investigating accidents and serious incidents by both countries (Nigeria and Ghana) are already conducting investigation on this serious incident, in accordance with strict ICAO Annex 13 on accident and serious investigation”, he said.


Olateru said AIB under its new management, in the last fourteen months, has been working round the clock to conclude all accidents and serious incidents, some of which dates back as far as 2008.


“This is why in the last twelve months AIB concluded 10 Accident/ serious Incident Reports, published and released the final Reports to the world with 39 safety recommendations targeted at NCAA, Airlines, FAAN, NAMA, Service providers, Aircraft and Engine Manufacturers . They can all be accessed on the AIB website.


“Furthermore, preliminary reports of the most recent three accidents and serious incidents, occurring in 2018, i.e. Delta Airlines, Nestoil and Dana Airlines, were promptly released within three weeks of their occurrences. This is record-breaking feat: and the first time ever in the history of Nigeria”, he added.


He said the Minister of State, Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika and all government agencies under his watch are working together to make sure that the airspace is safe adding that all our airlines are operating safe, and, that ‘safety is paramount, remains our foremost objective and is given the expected attention in line with global best practice, as well as the right levels of seriousness every aspect of the aviation business deserves.


“Thus, under Senator Hadi Sirika’s watch and reference to verifiable facts and figures, Nigerian aviation has moved away from the era of aviation fatal crashes to an environment of greater safety and non-fatal accidents. This is an indication that we are steadily; albeit, progressively moving towards an accident free ‘air environment’ as much as is humanly possible. It is noteworthy, that from February 2016 till date (a two-year time frame) since this present administration, no death and no fatality has occurred in the area of Air Transportation in Nigeria.


“Air accidents and serious incidents are not peculiar to Nigeria or Africa only. Accidents happen in the world over; however, when they do occur it is the responsiveness and professionalism of the relevant agencies like AIB, saddled by law with investigation responsibility which ensures that they carry out the specialized thorough investigations and come up with timely reports that engender and enable learning from mistakes; in order to forestall future occurrences.


“We would appeal that Nigerians adopt the direct approach of reporting air accidents and serious incidents by downloading the AIB APP  to their phones and tablets so that accidents and serious incidents can be promptly notified to the appropriate quarters in good time rather than resorting to social media public space, which often times, leaves room for speculations, misrepresentation and misinformation that do not support the global objective of safety but creates an unreasonable apprehension of fear in the public space.


“Rest assured that the current AIB team are well trained professional aviators, with the necessary expertise, skills-set and equipment resources with strong will and passion to do the right thing towards achieving best results in line with global standards and best practice”.


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