Preliminary report by the Accident Investigation Bureau has revealed that Max Air operated to Saudi Arabia for the 2019 hajj exercise with unserviceable Cockpit Voice Recorder, while the airline equally lacked approved Safety Management Systems as required by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Regulations.

The bureau revealed this in one of the two reports posted on its website on Tuesday.

They were the preliminary reports of two serious incidents, which involved Max Air and Air Peace.

The reports said that the incidents occurred on September 7 and November 5, 2019.

According to AIB, the Max Air aircraft, a Boeing 747-400 with the registration mark: 5N-DBK, had returned from Saudi Arabia on September 6, 2019, a day before having a serious incident at Minna International Airport with 560 passengers and 18 crew members onboard.

AIB in its report said that despite the fact that it retrieved and downloaded the CVR from its Flight Safety Laboratory of Accident Investigation Bureau Nigeria, it could not read any report from the CVR because it was not serviceable.

It however, said that it was able to get information on the serious incident from the Flight Data Recorder of the aircraft.

It’s a serious offence in aviation industry for any of the CVR and FDR not to be serviceable as this could hamper investigation into the cause of incident or accident.

The Federal Aviation Administration and other international aviation bodies frown at such practices among airlines.

The report said, “The Flight Data Recorder and Cockpit Voice Recorder were retrieved and downloaded at the Flight Safety Laboratory of Accident Investigation Bureau Nigeria.

“There were no relevant data recorded on the CVR as it was not serviceable as at the time the aircraft was dispatched.

“Data pertinent to the incident flight were captured on the FDR, which include: localiser deviation, glideslope devistion, pressure altitude, radio height and vertical acceleration.

“Examination of the marks on the runway revealed the following; the aircraft crossed the threshold right of centre line, was in a left bank, the left main wheels touched down and the number one engine nacelle contacted the runway on the centre line, 203 m from the threshold, and was dragged on the runway along the centre line for approximately 44 m. The body wheels touched down, followed by the right main

“The touchdown point was 203 m from the threshold on the right side of the runway centre line, the aircraft gradually steered to the centre line. On examining the number one engine, the bottom surface of the nacelle was abraded, thereby releasing the cowl latches resulting in the fan cowls being blown off the engine by the slipstream.”

The serious incident caused damag to the aircraft, while the runway was also damaged as a result of the incident.

The preliminary report also mentioned the serious incident that occurred on Air Peace en route Sam Mbakwe Airport from the Lagos Airport on November 5, 2019.

The report revealed that at 23,000ft, there was a loud bang in the aircraft, which led to its automation to go off, while the aircraft veered a little to the right and the loss of Engine Two.

According to the report, there was a second bang few seconds after the first bang from the same aircraft, which affected Engine One, made the crew to make air return to base immediately and declared ‘May Day’ to the Lagos Area Control Centre.

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