Two-and-a-half months on, no sign of probe report on Karipur air crash

Two-and-a-half months on, no sign of probe report on Karipur air crash
Flight crash rubble being removed from the accident site. Photo: Fahad Muneer

Malappuram: It has been two-and-a-half months since an Air India Express flight from Dubai crashed while landing at the tabletop runway of the Calicut International Airport in Karipur, but there is still no sign of the investigation report into the incident.

A team of experts from the Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau (AAIB), which is investigating the accident, had inspected the site two months ago. People’s representatives and officials have expressed concerns to the Ministry of Civil Aviation over the delay in the releasing the final report. Earlier, the team led by Captain S S Chahar had said that there would be no preliminary investigation report on the accident.

The Union Ministry of Civil Aviation had initially said that the final report should be submitted within five months. However, following demands from the MPs from Kerala, it asked the panel of experts to submit the report as soon as possible. The process of transferring the wreckage of the Air India Express plane from the crash site to another part of the airport started only on Thursday.

The flight from Dubai overshot the runway after it skidded while landing and crashed into a 35-foot deep gorge on the night of August 7, killing 21 people, including the pilot and co-pilot. A total of 163 people were treated for injuries in hospitals and discharged. Two people are still undergoing treatment. .

The investigation report is crucial for the Kozhikode airport, as some have blamed the short tabletop runway for the accident. Although the Union Minister of Civil Aviation has stated that the tabletop runway is not the cause of the accident, it needs to be confirmed by the investigation report.

The DGCA had imposed a temporary ban on big aircraft services at the airport after the accident. It is yet to lift the ban.

Interim compensation paid

An interim compensation has been paid to the 184 passengers who were involved in the accident, according to Air India Express.

It said Rs 10 lakh was given to the relatives of 15 dead victims who were aged above 12 years and Rs 5 lakh to the relatives of four children below 12 years of age who died in the accident. The airline paid Rs 2 lakh each to the 92 passengers who were seriously injured and Rs 50,000 each to the 73 people who suffered minor injuries.

Air India Express said that the process of distributing the final compensation to the passengers has started.

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