Monday, March 07, 2022

AAIB violates norms, names pilots in the final report into Gwalior accident

Mumbai: Carrying names of flight crew in an accident investigation report and secondly, making changes to a final report, post publication, without putting it on record that the report has been altered amounts to violation of norms laid down for such investigations. The Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau (AAIB) allegedly committed both these violations in a final report it released recently and then re-released with changes.

The matter pertains to the May 6, 2021 non-fatal, landing accident involving a Beechcraft King Air 250 aircraft (VT-MPQ) in Gwalior. The final report of the accident was accepted by the director general, Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau (AAIB) and was uploaded on its website on February 11.

“It carried names of the flight crew which is a violation of the Aircraft (Investigation of Accidents and Incidents) Rules 2017, Para 17(3) states that the final report shall not disclose the names of the persons involved in the accident or incident. Para 22 states that, ‘any person who contravenes, or fails to comply with, any of these rules, shall be punishable in accordance with the provisions of the sub-section (2) of section 10 of the Act’,” said Capt Amit Singh, an air safety expert. Capt Singh, founder of “Safety Matters Foundation’, an NGO that promotes safety culture in aviation said that he pointed out the violation in a tweet he posted on a social media platform on February 22.

Two days later, on February 24, the final report that was accepted and published was replaced by another report. The new report redacted, deleted the names of the crew. But it did not put on record that a revision or amendment has been made to the original document, noted Capt Singh in a letter sent recently to MoCA about the issue. Now, there are now two versions of the same final report, one which carries the names of the crew and another one without the names. “Such changes in Aircraft Accident Reports amount to fraudulent alteration involving the material alteration to a central government issued document by a person other than the person who signed the instrument,” he said.

07/03/22 Manju V/Times of India

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