LAGOS — Failure of regulation may have been responsible for the crash of Associated Airlines plane at the Lagos airport yesterday, killing about 15 persons and injuring others.
Reports have it that 20 persons, including seven crew members, were on board the ill-fated plane, Brazilian made Embraer 120, when it came down.
Although Accident Investigation Bureau, AIB, is yet to conclude investigations into the crash, circumstances surrounding the crash indicate that the aircraft was not airworthy and was not checked by inspectors of Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA, before take-off.
This is because it is unusual for an airliner that just took off from the airport to be unable to make an air return to base minutes after
Vanguard learnt yesterday that the plane crashed shortly after it took off for Akure, after allegedly losing one of its twin-engine .
Ideally, every aircraft is supposed to carry an inspector on board or at least certify that the aircraft is fit to fly.
Immediate past Director-General of NCAA, Dr. Harold Demuren, had always lamented that the agency lacked adequate inspectors to properly discharge its responsibility of auditing aircraft operating in the country for safety.
The reason Demuren adduced for this was insufficient funds to engage aircraft inspectors who are mainly retired pilots and aircraft engineers.
It was also the same reason he constantly prevailed on airline operators to remit the 5% passenger service charge, PSC, collected by airlines on behalf of the agency, which the airlines hardly remitted.
Since the exit of Demuren from office, there had been no sign to show that the agency now has adequate number of inspectors to certify planes for take-off.