Sunday, February 22, 2015

Bahamas Cites Poor Decisions by Crew as Cause of Plane Crash

Investigators looking into a small plane crash that killed a prominent Christian minister and eight others last year have found it was likely caused by bad decisions by the crew during stormy weather, the islands' civil aviation department said Sunday.

A Learjet carrying the Rev. Myles Munroe and members of his Bahamas Faith Ministries crashed Nov. 9 after striking a shipping crane as it attempted to land in Grand Bahama. The crash killed everyone on board, including Munroe's wife.

On Sunday, the islands' civil aviation department said its accident investigation unit had concluded its probe into the crash. In a final report, investigators determined that poor decision-making by the crew as they attempted to descend below the authorized altitude without being able to see the runway area was the probable cause.

The jet was trying to land during heavy rain and reduced visibility as a storm front passed over the area. During a second attempt at landing at the Grand Bahama International Airport, the crew struck a crane at a shipyard during a "go-around procedure," according to the Sunday statement from the civil aviation department.

The right outboard wing, landing gear and right wing fuel tank separated from the plane on impact, according to the department.  The aircraft spun out of control for roughly 1,578 feet (526 yards) before slamming into a recycling facility. Nobody on the ground was hurt.

Munroe was a best-selling author, motivational speaker and influential Christian pastor who frequently spoke on television and gave sermons around the world. At the time of the crash, he and the others were flying to a global leadership forum that he had organized in the Bahamas.


NTSB Identification: ERA15RA047
14 CFR Non-U.S., Non-Commercial
Accident occurred Sunday, November 09, 2014 in Freeport, Bahamas
Aircraft: GATES LEARJET CORP. 35A, registration: N17UF
Injuries: 9 Fatal.

The foreign authority was the source of this information.

On November 9, 2014, about 1652 eastern standard time, a Gates Learjet Corp 35A, N17UF, registered to Diplomat Aviation (Bahamas) Ltd., was destroyed when it impacted a crane and terrain during approach to Grand Bahama International Airport (MYGF), Freeport, Grand Bahama, Bahamas. The airline transport pilot, copilot, and seven passengers were fatally injured. Instrument meteorological conditions prevailed. The flight originated from Lynden Pindling International Airport (MYNN), Nassau, Bahamas, about 1600 and was operating under Bahamian flight regulations at the time of the accident.

The investigation is under the jurisdiction of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas. Further information pertaining to this accident may be obtained from:

Air Accident Investigation & Prevention Unit
Bahamas Department of Civil Aviation 
P.O. Box AP-59244 
Nassau, N.P., The Bahamas 
1 (242) 376-1617 
1 (242) 377-6060 FAX 

This report is for informational purposes, and only contains information released by the Commonwealth of The Bahamas.
Captain Stanley Thurston 

First Officer Frahkan Cooper
The passengers and pilots preparing to board the ill-fated flight.

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