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Monday 11 December 2017

Final report delayed on plane crash that killed six at airport

The mangled wreckage of the Manx aircraft is removed from the runway at Cork Airport
The mangled wreckage of the Manx aircraft is removed from the runway at Cork Airport
Paul Melia

Paul Melia

INVESTIGATORS into an air crash which left six people dead have yet to determine what caused it.

The Air Accident Investigation Unit (AAIU) said today it needed more time to finalise its report into the February 2011 incident at Cork Airport, which resulted in a Spanish-registered aircraft crashing as it attempted to land in heavy fog.

The aircraft was operating with a Spanish crew on a flight from Belfast for the Isle of Man-based carried, Manx 2.  Six people, including the captain and co-pilot, died and six passengers were injured.

The AAIU revealed in an interim statement last February there was a mismatch between the torques delivered by the airplane’s two engines, with a sensor in one found to be shorter than required by the manufacturer’s specifications.

In a second interim statement published today, it said the investigation had examined operational and technical evidence to identify the cause and contributory factors which caused the accident.

However, investigators also probed “deeper systemic issues” association with the operation of the aircraft, a Fairchild Metro III, including “oversight functions” and legal frameworks which included examining the relationships between the various parties involved.

To accomplish this, the AAIU had to engage with the Spanish Aviation Safety and Security Agency, the European Commission and European Aviation Safety Agency.

As Spanish was an official language in the Convention on International Civil Aviation (ICAO), many of the documents had to be translated into English which had taken a considerable period of time.

“This process has been iterative and involved interviewing additional personnel as the investigation progressed, in addition to sourcing and cross referencing documentation in several jurisdictions,” the statement said.

“It has taken the Investigation considerable time to accurately translate such documents, which in most cases are highly technical in nature.”

A draft final report is currently being finalised, it added.  It would be open to interested parties to make comments for 60 days, after which a final report will be published.

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