Six onboard as police helicopter crashes in Bauchi

A police helicopter which took off from the Federal Capital Territory has crashed at the Bauchi Airport.

The Accident Investigation Bureau, in a statement on Thursday, said the incident occurred around 07:30pm on Wednesday.

According to the statement signed by AIB spokesman, Tunji Oketunbi, six persons were onboard the copter when the crash occurred.

Oketunbi said though “there were some injuries but no fatality”.

The statement was titled, ‘Press Statement On Nigeria Police Helicopter Occurrence’.

It read, “On 26th January, 2022, Accident Investigation Bureau, Nigeria was notified by Nigerian Airspace Management Agency about an accident involving a Bell 429 helicopter with Registration Marks 5N-MDA owned and operated by Nigeria Police Force. The accident occurred on 26th January, 2022 around 7:30pm (Local Time) at Bauchi Airport.

“The NPF helicopter had departed Abuja at 16:54 UTC for Bauchi with six persons onboard maintaining 5,500ft.

“There were some injuries but no fatality.

“The investigating agency, AIB-N needs and hereby solicits for your assistance. We want the public to know that we would be amenable to receiving any video clips, evidence, or information any member of the public may have of the accident that can assist us with this investigation.

“The Bureau will appreciate that the general public and press respect the privacy of the people involved and not assume the cause of the accident until formal report is released.”

On Sunday, February 21, 2021, seven NAF officers died onboard a Beechcraft KingAir B350i aircraft when the jet crashed in Abuja.

Also, March 31, 2021, NAF said an Alpha-Jet aircraft involved in the anti-terror war against Boko Haram and Islamic State West Africa Province lost radar contact in Borno State. Two officers were onboard the missing jet which was later declared crashed and the whereabouts of the two airmen were unknown till date.

on May 21, 2021, the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Ibrahim Attahiru and 10 others were onboard a NAF Beachcraft 350 aircraft when the automobile bird crashed near the Kaduna International Airport.

The frequent crashes of NAF jets had raised concerns around the safety of military aviation in Nigeria. While civil aviation has recorded no crash involving commercial flights in about a decade, military jets have been crashing in quick succession, one which experts say is not good for the safety record of the country.

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