On 4th October, 2018 an Air Tractor AT401B aircraft with nationality and registration marks 5N-BTV, operated by Skypower Express Airways Nigeria Limited was on agricultural aerial spray (operation) on a Visual Flight Rules (VFR). The operation was scheduled for three sorties at Olam rice farm, located at Rukubi, about 90 NM South-East of Abuja, Nigeria. On board was one occupant (pilot) and fuel endurance of two hours ten minutes.
At about 09:04 h, the aircraft took-off from Rukubi airstrip to NE05 field, with 600 litres of liquid chemical for the third and last sortie of 22 runs for the day. According to the Pilot, after six runs, he climbed to about 150 ft and turned left to line up for the next run; heading west. Halfway into the run, the pilot heard the engine sputter, backfired and stopped. He also stated that the oil pressure, oil temperature and the fuel pressure indications were all within the green arc. Then, he primed the engine and tried to re-start it, the engine cranked but did not start.