25 | JUN | 2019
Mexican government reveals updates on helicopter crash investigation
A thorough inspection of the Pratt & Whitney PW207C engines noted that they were fully functional at the time of the crash - Photo: Hilda Ríos/EFE

Mexican government reveals updates on helicopter crash investigation

11/06/2019
12:48
Sara Cantera
Mexico City
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On December 24, a helicopter crash claimed the lives of Puebla governor Martha Erika Alonso and her husband

Mexico’s General Directorate of Civil Aeronautics (DGAC) reported on progress in the investigation of the Augusta A109S helicopter crash that claimed the lives of Puebla governor Martha Erika Alonso and her husband, Rafael Moreno Valle on December 24, 2018.

The investigation updates are as follows:

A thorough inspection of the Pratt & Whitney PW207C engines noted that they were fully functional at the time of the crash.

However, all internal memory components that could have confirmed this information were lost upon impact.

Furthermore, the inspection of the aircraft control components, such as the main and tail rotors, as well as the transmission and 90° gearbox indicated that none of the components showed any signs of malfunctioning at the time of the crash.

From the analysis of all four master warning and master caution lights, experts were able to determine that the lights were on right before impact, though they have not yet been able to assess the exact time at which the lights were turned on during the flight.

A CT scan of the linear EMA was conducted at a lab in Chicago, Illinois, though no internal damage was detected.

Moreover, another CT scan of three hydraulic linear actuators was conducted in Cascina Costa, Italy, though scientists did not detect any relevant internal damage or metal residues. All fractures and deformities are consistent with the damage occurred during the crash.

Aircraft accident experts from Canada’s Transportation Safety Board (TSB), the Agenzia Nazionale per la Sicurezza del Volo (ANSV) in Italy, the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), and the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) have participated in the helicopter crash investigation.

The Mexican government has also consulted with manufacturers Leonard Helicopter Division (LHD) and Logic, in Italy; Patt & Whitney and Safran, in Canada, and Honeywell Aerospace & Collins, in the U.S.

Aiming to increase the transparency of the investigation and detect the causal factors of the crash, the aforesaid authorities requested that they be involved in the investigation to verify compliance with Annex 13 of the International Civil Aviation Organization.

The DGAC added that investigations will continue before presenting the final report.
 

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