By Prince Okafor

No fewer than 37 persons, including four-member flight crew of Overland Airways survived, as the company’s aircraft with registration number 5N-BRQ engine caught fire mid-air.

The ATR 42 aircraft, en-route Ilorin-Lagos, landed successfully on the Runway 18R of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, MMIA, Lagos, on Wednesday evening.

Following the Pilot-in-Command of the aircraft’s report on the incident, the Lagos airport control tower consequently put the airport emergency response team, including the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, FAAN’s fire services department, on notice, following the Mayday.

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In a statement issued by the company, it stated: “Overland Airways wishes to inform the general public that its flight OF1188 from Ilorin to Lagos experienced an unusual high turbine temperature on one of its engines today, Wednesday, June 15, 2022 around 7:50pm.

“This occurred in the approach phase of flight and the aircraft landed very safely as the crew skillfully implemented their standard procedures for such abnormal situations.

“All 33 passengers remained calm through the process and safely disembarked row by row in accordance with post-COVID-19 procedures after the aircraft came to a halt on the Murtala Mohammed International Airport Lagos runway 18 Right.

“No passenger was hurt in any way.

“Overland Airways salutes the professional interventions of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, FAAN; Nigerian Airspace Management Agency, NAMA; Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA, and the Accident Investigation Bureau Nigeria (AIB-N), which were very prompt and reassuring.

“Overland Airways regrets any inconvenience to its passengers and assures the travelling public of its full commitment to the safety of its services and passengers.”

AIB, NCAA react

Meanwhile, when Vanguard contacted the spokesperson for Accident Investigation Bureau, AIB, Tunji Oketubi, he confirmed that development was true.

He, however, stated that he is yet to get full details of the development.

He also noted that after proper assessment, the Bureau will share a statement to the general public.

Also, the General Manager, Public Affairs, Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA, Samuel Adurogboye, stated that this development happens in the sector, although not frequent.

He said: “After they have carried out the necessary maintenance, there will be an inspection of the aircraft.

“We cannot understand what led to this development until AIB, along with every other stakeholders in the aviation sector, conclude the inspection.”

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