Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Bhoja Air plane crash: Civil Aviation Authority accused of giving clearance in violation of International Civil Aviation Organization rules

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) is learnt to have allowed Bhoja aircraft to land at Islamabad airport when the sky was covered with cumulonimbus clouds - associated with violent events such as lightning, thunder and tornadoes - in violation of International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) rules.

The Meteorological Department had twice issued a weather warning to CAA on April 21 and on both the occasions it warned of an extremely high wind pressure.

CAA disregarded the warnings and allowed the Bhoja Air plane to land.

Flying in cumulonimbus clouds is clear violation of ICAO rules and entering them is akin to committing suicide: Any aircraft flying in the vicinity of these clouds experiences disruptions of communications and navigation equipment, besides facing serious hazards, a senior official of Met Off said on condition of anonymity.

He said that cumulonimbus cloud is one of the largest cloud formation on earth's weather patterns.

Tall, column-like cloud appearance, often with a flat top, can indicate severe lightning, heavy rains and high winds.

"If the CCA had properly followed Met Department's weather warnings and guided the aircraft to land at an alternative airport, the Bhoja plane's crash may have been avoided," he said.


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