Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) was notified of the accident by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) on the day of the occurrence. Investigators were deployed to Kabba, Kogi State on 3rd February, 2019 and commenced post occurrence assessments, under the provisions of Civil Aviation (Investigation of Air Accidents and Incidents) Regulations 2016 and International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Annex 13. The purpose of this preliminary report is to provide details of the initial facts, discussions and findings surrounding the occurrence; it includes information gathered from witness statements, flight recorders, Health and Usage Monitoring System (HUMS) Data, Flight Data Monitoring (FDM) data, and preliminary inspection of the accident site and the wreckage.
On 2nd February, 2019 at about 07:26 h, an AgustaWestland (AW139) helicopter with nationality and registration marks 5N-CML owned and operated by Caverton Helicopters Limited departed Murtala Mohammed International Airport Lagos, for Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Abuja, to conduct a chartered VIP flight from Abuja to Okene via Kabba and then return to Abuja. The positioning flight to Abuja was uneventful.
At about 13:46 h, the helicopter departed Abuja runway 22 for Kabba, Kogi State on a VIP chartered flight Nigeria 002 (NGR002), on a Visual Flight Rule (VFR) Flight Plan with 12 persons onboard, including the Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, his entourage and three crew members (Captain, Co-Pilot and an Engineer). The fuel onboard was 1,268 kg. A squawk code of 1301 was given by the Air Traffic Control (ATC) for radar monitoring. The Captain was the Pilot Flying (PF) while the Co-pilot was the Pilot Monitoring (PM).
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