Following the emergency landing of Max Air at the Minna International Airport in Niger State two days ago, Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) has taken it upon itself to investigate the cause of the incident which threatened the lives of over 500 pilgrims returning from the 2019 Hajj.
What really happened: The incident was first reported as a crash by the media explaining that the Boeing 744 plane with registration number 5N/DBK experienced a hard side landing at Runway 05 of Minna International Airport, almost skidding off the runway, with evidence of the crash littered all over the tarmac, according to sources.
Denial: Chairman, of Max Air, Dahiru Barau Mangal, discredited the media reports saying there was no crash. According to him, the reports were targeted to smear the airline’s image and good service. He, however, attributed the hard landing of the plane to poor weather conditions.
“The reports that our plane crashed landed is untrue and mischief calculated at tarnishing our long service of safe transportation of Nigerians and others. Our Aircraft never developed any engine problems but rather the weather at the airport and the lack of runway light forced us to safe land.”
Nevertheless, the AIB is on course with its investigations. The incident of the crash was confirmed by Capt Ibrahim Dili, Max Air’s Director of Flight Operations, who said the event happened in the early hours of September 7.
He attributed the poor landing system to the bad atmospheric condition of heavy rain and unstable winds. He said the landing system at the airport worsened issues by giving the pilot unreliable signals. He also said that no life was lost as all passengers and crew members disembarked safely.
AIB in a statement by Tunji Oketunbi promised to wade into the matter as the body had already been notified of the incident by Max Air during the plane’s final approach on Runway 23 at the Minna International Airport.