Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) was notified of the occurrence on the 16th of June 2013. Investigators were dispatched to carry out a preliminary investigation on the occurrence.
At about 1705hrs, on 21st May, 2013, TBM-850 (turbo prop aircraft certified for 1-pilot operation) with registration 5N-BZA, operated by Nigerian College of Aviation Technology (NCAT), Zaria as admin-flight1, departed Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja (NAIA) to Zaria Aerodrome, with two persons on board (pilot and an observer).
Shortly after it commenced descent and while passing FL130, the aircraft entered an intense area of hail associated with a CB cloud. The encounter caused damage to the aircraft’s radome, landing lights and other parts of the engine but the flight continued to its destination, Zaria Aerodrome and landed safely.
The occupants of the aircraft sustained minor injuries. Instrument Meteorological Conditions (IMC) prevailed at the time of the occurrence and the flight was operating on an Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) flight plan.