The pilot-in-command of the Dana Air jet that crashed on June 3, 2012, Captain Peter Waxtan, had previously been suspended by the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for violating safety regulations, according to a report released by the Nigerian Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB).
The accident report, which was uploaded on the AIB website and examined by our correspondent, stated that the pilot, a 55-year-old as at the time of the crash, was suspended in 2009 by the FAA for misdemeanors relating to a heavy landing and fixing panels that were neither entered in the aircraft logbook nor reported by him.
The report also revealed that Mr. Waxtan submitted unsigned recommendation letters to Dana Air and the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) before being employed by the airline. Furthermore, his pilot’s license was stamped by the NCAA, but not signed by any NCAA official.
The AIB report further disclosed that Mr. Waxtan’s training captain in flight school gave him a negative evaluation, saying that he needed to improve his callout and operating procedures. The training captain also commented that Mr. Waxtan needed to adhere to the Abuja Company Procedures and Pilot Monitoring and Radiotelephone Procedures.
The training captain issued this evaluation on April 26, 2012, just six weeks before the deadly crash.
The regulatory body, however, could not confirm if Mr. Waxtan made the required improvements before being issued a pilot’s license.
The report also maintained that the pilot’s training was rushed.
“The captain was employed on the 14th of March, 2012. He began flying line training operations under the supervision of a training captain on the 26th of April, 2012 after completing ground school and simulator training. The background checks were said to have been done with nothing found to disqualify the pilot.
“He started flying as a checked-out captain on the 2nd of May, 2012 and had accrued over 120 hours of flight time before the accident. There was no documented evidence that the crew performed the mandatory Crew Resource Management (CRM) training.”
The AIB investigator also discovered discrepancies in the fueling records of the aircraft.
According to the AIB, fueling records indicated that the aircraft uplifted 8000 pounds of fuel before departing from Abuja while the flight crew reported to the air traffic controller on duty that they had a total of 26,000 pounds of fuel.
The AIB, in its final report, observed that “the captain was new in the company, having been employed on the 14th of March, 2012, and was checked out as a line captain on the 1st of May, 2012. The captain had previous regulatory issues with the US FAA, which led to his suspension at that time. All the reference letters presented by the captain to Dana Airlines were neither signed nor authenticated.
“The background check on the captain was inadequate. The line training given to the captain was hurriedly carried out. There was no evidence that the deficiencies observed by the checkout captain were addressed before the accident.
“The aircraft was airworthy at the time of departure. The aircraft came out from a check and was released to service on 1st June, 2012. All deferred defects were cleared during the last check. The left aileron bus cable was replaced on 1st June, 2012. A test flight was carried out on 2nd June, 2012 after the replacement of left aileron bus cable,” the report stated.
It would be recalled that the Dana Air aircraft crashed in the Iju-Ishaga area of Lagos, roughly 5.8 miles north of Lagos Airport.
All 153 persons on board, including six crew members, perished while another six died on ground.
During the impact sequence, the airplane struck an uncompleted building, two trees and three other buildings.
The wreckage was confined to a small area, with the separated tail section and engines located at the beginning of the debris trail.
The airplane was mostly consumed by post-crash fire. The tail section, both engines and portions of both wings, representing only about 15 percent of the airplane, were recovered from the accident site for further examination.
Original article can be found here: http://saharareporters.com
Aircraft Accident Report: http://www.aib.gov.ng
The investigation identified the following:
Probable Causal Factors;
1. Engine number 1 lost power seventeen minutes into the flight, and thereafter on final approach, Engine number 2 lost power and failed to respond to throttle movement on demand for increased power to sustain the aircraft in its flight configuration.
2. The inappropriate omission of the use of the Checklist, and the crew’s inability to appreciate the severity of the power-related problem, and their subsequent failure to land at the nearest suitable airfield.
3. Lack of situation awareness, inappropriate decision making, and poor airmanship.
Eight Safety Recommendations were made.
NTSB Identification: DCA12RA084
Accident occurred Sunday, June 03, 2012 in Lagos, Nigeria
Aircraft: BOEING MD-83, registration:
Injuries: 153 Fatal.
The foreign authority was the source of this information.
On June 3, 2012 about 1545 hours local time, 5N-RAM, a Boeing MD-83, operated by Dana Airlines Limited as flight 992 (DAN 992), crashed into a densely populated area during a forced landing following a total loss of power in both engines while on approach to Muhammed Murtala Airport (LOS), Lagos, Nigeria. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time, and the airplane was on an instrument flight rules flight plan. All 153 persons aboard the airplane, including the 6 crew members, were fatally injured. There were 10 confirmed ground fatalities. The airplane was destroyed, and there was a post impact fire. The domestic scheduled commercial flight was operating from Abuja International Airport(ABV), Abuja, Nigeria to LOS.
The Nigeria Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) has instituted an investigation. As the State of manufacture of the airplane and engines, a U.S. Accredited Representative has been appointed with technical advisors from the National Transportation Safety Board, Federal Aviation Administration, The Boeing Company, and Pratt & Whitney Engines. Inquires about the investigation should be directed to the AIB at the following address:
Accident Investigation Bureau
Murtala Muhammed Airport