On 30th December 2019 at about 20:46 h, an Airbus A330-343 aircraft with nationality and registration marks TC-LOL operated by Turkish Airlines Inc. departed Istanbul Airport (LTFM), Istanbul; Turkey for Port Harcourt International Airport (DNPO), Rivers State; Nigeria, as a scheduled flight THY3WJ operating on Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) flight plan in Instrument Metrological Condition (IMC). The flight had 295 persons on board including 11 crew members. The Captain was the Pilot Flying (PF), while the Co-Pilot was the Pilot Monitoring (PM).
According to the crew statements, the flight was delayed for two hours before departure. The crew added that at the time of initial contact with Port Harcourt Approach (APP), they noticed that the Automatic Terminal Information Service (ATIS), was off the air.
At 03:10 h, THY3WJ established two-way contact with Port Harcourt Approach reported descending to FL220 on-course NAPVA. APP acknowledged and cleared THY3WJ to Port Harcourt VOR (POT) FL220 and to expect no delay for ILS Approach runway 21, and to stand by for a full meteorological report. The crew requested for further descent and was further cleared to 2,400 ft. APP subsequently passed 02:00 UTC meteorological report to the crew as follows: “WIND IS CALM, VISIBILITY 5KM IN HAZE, NO SIGNIFICANT CLOUD, TEMPERATURE 24oC, DEW POINT 28oC, QNH 1009.” The clearance was acknowledged by the crew.