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Wreckage of Bell helicopter 206B3 with registration Marks 5N-BQW operated by Quorum Aviation

No fuel found in Quorum Helicopter tank after crash says AIB preliminary report

  • No evidence to show pilot applied for extension on medicals, proficiency check
ACCIDENT Investigation Bureau (AIB) has released the Preliminary Report on the accident involving a Bell 206B III Helicopter with nationality and registration marks 5N-BQW operated by Quorum Aviation Limited (QAL) which occurred at Opebi Area, Lagos On 28th August, 2020

The AIB in its initial findings released Monday September 21, 2020 has revealed that the helicopter had no capacity to jettisoning fuel but there was no fuel left in the fuel tanks after the crash even after the helicopter was topped to full tank capacity on 27th August, 2020 at Port Harcourt.

This is just as the report has indicated that there was no evidence showing that the pilot had applied for exemption provided by the NCAA’s  All Operators’ Letter AOL DG020/20 neither was there evidence of an application for the exemption provided by the AOL DG018/20 for proficiency check

The Quorum Helicopter crashed into the roof of a building and a wall fence impacting two vehicles parked in the compound at Salvation Street Opebi, Ikeja Lagos

The report read, “On 27th August 2020, a Bell 206B III helicopter with nationality and registration marks 5N-BQW, operated by Quorum Aviation Limited, was topped up with 247 litres of fuel to full tank capacity on ground Port Harcourt Military airport (DNPM). The technical logbook entry revealed that there was an engine run for 10 minutes and a test flight of 20 minutes in preparation for a positioning flight the next day.“

“The helicopter was topped to full tank capacity on 27th August, 2020. After refueling, 10 minutes of engine run and 20 minutes of test flight were carried out on 27th August, 2020 at Port Harcourt.   The helicopter was fitted with a range-extender fuel system.  No fuel jettisoning capability on this helicopter.

“The helicopter has an endurance of 3:24h. The operational flight plan filed by the pilot indicated an endurance of 3:15h and an estimated flight time of 2:45h. The helicopter engine was started at 09:15h. The helicopter took off at 09:20h.The helicopter crashed at 12:14h.There was no fuel left in the fuel tanks after the crash. The mast and main rotor blades were found intact during the post-crash inspection.”

On the aircraft, the preliminary report stated that helicopter had a valid Certificate of Airworthiness as The Aircraft Maintenance Engineers’ License Validity was till 14th February, 2022  and Aircraft Ratings: Category A&C Agusta/Bell 206, Bell 212, Sikorsky  S76, Eurocopter EC 155 helicopters  while the Certificate of Airworthiness of the chopper was  Valid till 29th October 2020.

On the crew however, the AIB report indicated that, “The Pilot’s last medical examination was valid till 6th August, 2020. There was no evidence to show that an application for the exemption provided by the All Operators’ Letter AOL DG020/20 had been submitted to the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority.

“The Pilot’s last Proficiency Check was valid till 24th August 2020. There was no evidence to show that an application for the exemption provided by the AOL DG018/20 had been submitted to the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority.

The report also indicated several communications between 5N-BQW and Lagos Tower until Tower raised 5N-BQW on radio and there was no response.

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Nigerianflightdeck is an online news and magazine platform reporting business stories with a bias for aviation and travel. It is borne out of the intention to inform, educate as well as alter perceptions with balanced reportage.

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