NAF Personnel at a Retraining Programme in Abuja, FCT Photo: Channels TV

Safety: Nigeria Air Force trains personnel to address incessant aircraft crashes

*The Nigerian Air Force commences retraining of personnel in order to ensure the safety of crew members as part of efforts at tackling the incessant air mishaps in the country

Alexander Davis | ConsumerConnect

Sequel to the recent incidents and accidents involving the military, the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) has commenced the retraining of personnel towards ensuring the safety of its crew as part of efforts at tackling the incessant air mishaps in the country.

One of the latest aircraft crashes claimed the lives of military officers, including late Lieutenant-General Ibrahim Attahiru, immediate past Chief of Army Staff (COAS).

Attahiru, who was appointed as the Chief of Army Staff in January 2021 died in a plane crash May 21, in Kaduna with 10 other personnel of the Nigerian Army and Nigerian Air Force.

Nigeria Airforce Jets  Photo: Intelregion

Air Commodore Esen Efanga, NAF Director of Training, while addressing reporters Saturday, June 19, 2021, in Abuja, FCT, explained that the Chief of Air Staff approved the training to enable the crew to be up to speed with global best practices while reducing human factors that cause air crashes.

The NAF Director of Training stated: “We have discovered that in the world, most of accidents and incidents have been attributed to human factors which the human being is the most critical aspect of the aviation sector.

“We have also discovered that most of the accidents do not have to do with the technical abilities of the crew, but rather the interface between the human-and-human, and the human-and-the-aircraft.”

Air Commodore Efanga said: “Because at this point, we are involved in several operations all over the country, this does not come without risks that we have seen in the air force of recent involving incidents and accidents.”

According to him, the training was the first in a series of training that would be carried out in all operational units at various centres across Nigeria.

He noted that the crew were trained by very seasoned and experienced resource persons who were certified to impart such knowledge.

Efanga further said: “It is the Chief of Air Staff’s intention to establish a culture of safety in the Nigerian Air Force so that while we have increased and enhanced our operations, we take care of this critical aspect of NAF operations.”

It is recalled that aside from the aircraft crash involving late Attahiru, the incident was preceded by two other crashes – the first being Beechcraft KingAir B350i which crashed at Bassa village in Abuja, FCT, while en route to Minna, killing seven NAF personnel in the process.

Personnel on board the plane had reported an engine failure and were on their way back to the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport before the aircraft crashed.

Barely six weeks after the crash, a NAF Alpha Jet aircraft went missing while on an operation in Borno State and was found to have crashed days later.

The aircraft lost contact with radar on March 31 this year while on an interdiction mission in support of ground troops fighting insurgency in the state.

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