Chuuk crash preliminary report published

The findings and causes of the Air Niugini P2-PXE Boeing 737-8BK crash landing in the Chuuk State of the Federated States of Micronesia have been reserved for the Final Report.

The PNG Accident Investigation Commission has stated this when releasing its Preliminary Report on Friday October 26 with details of the aircraft which crash landed in Chuuk Lagoon.

The Preliminary reports states that the Pilots included a 52 year old Papua New Guinenan Captain with 19, 780.7 hours of flight time under his belt, and a 35 year old Australian Co-Pilot with 4, 618 hours flight time under his belt.

There were 12 crewmembers and 35 passengers on board. Six passengers were seriously injured, and one passenger fatally injured.

The report states that at 9:45 am local time, the aircraft impacted the water of Chuuk Lagoon about 1,500 ft (460 m) short of the runway 04 threshold, during its approach to runway 04 at Chuuk International Airport.

As the aircraft settled in the water, it turned clockwise through 210 degrees and drifted 460 ft (140 m) south east of the runway 04 extended centreline, with the nose of the aircraft pointing about 265 deg.

The 12 crew members and 34 passengers exited the aircraft and were promptly rescued and brought to shore by U.S. Navy divers (who were the first on scene), Chuuk State Government boats, Red Cross, Transco, and more than twenty privately-owned boats.

Local divers located the fatally injured passenger in the aircraft 3 days after the accident.

The reports state that the aircraft was substantially damaged by impact forces.

The initial examination of video taken by the divers showed that the main landing gear separated from the aircraft during the water impact. The rear fuselage behind the wing had fractured during the impact sequence The aircraft sank in 90 ft of water to the Chuuk Lagoon seabed.

Meanwhile the Flight Data comprising of an solid-state cockpit voice recorder (SSFDR) itself, a flight data acquisition unit (FDAU); and aircraft sensor were recorded and in good quality.


Cedric Patjole