The Accident Investigation Bureau, AIB, on Monday said mechanical failure and pilot error caused a 2012 air crash in Nigeria that killed 159 people.
The AIB, in its final report, said two engines on the Dana Air flight failed mid-air before it crashed on approaching the Lagos airport.
“Engine number one lost power 17 minutes into the flight, and thereafter on final approach, engine number two lost power and failed to respond to throttle movement on demand for increased power to sustain the aircraft in its flight configuration,” the report stated.
According to the AIB commissioner, Akin Olateru, the inappropriate omission of the use of the checklist, the crew’s inability to appreciate the severity of the power-related problem, and their subsequent failure to land at the nearest suitable airfield contributed to the crash.
“Lack of situation awareness, inappropriate decision-making and poor airmanship”, the investigators said, were also to blame for the crash on June 3, 2012.
The Dana aircraft was carrying 153 passengers and crew when it crashed into a densely-populated area in the north of Lagos and burst into flames. Six people were killed on the ground.
The investigation involved officials from the airline, engine manufacturers Pratt & Whitney and international aviation experts.
“Everybody is satisfied with the final report and those found wanting have made necessary adjustments,” the report stated.
Nigerian aviation authorities suspended Dana’s operating licence on June 5, 2012, two days after the crash. But it was briefly allowed to resume operation in January 2013 after meeting some safety standards but did not start full operations until January 2014.
According to the AFP, Mr. Olateru said the AIB, which released a preliminary report on the crash in September 2012, spent so long on the investigation because of cash shortages.
Mr. Olateru said the agency needed more funding, as the N16 million allocated in 2017 was not enough.
In its reaction, Dana Airline’s Media and Communications Manager, Kingsley Ezenwa, said, “We wish to also state that Dana Air swung into action immediately the interim safety recommendations were released in 2013.”
Mr. Ezenwa noted that as an airline, Dana is strictly committed to the safety and comfort of its guests, adding that the airline also implemented the recommendations by the agency.
“We implemented all the recommendations same year as released by the AIB,” he said.