Mon, Mar 15, 2004
USAF Releases Findings in Afghanistan Accident
A USAF accident investigation board
last week determined that failure of the No. 2 engine because of
compressor stall, failure of the auxiliary fuel tanks to jettison
and the uneven terrain of the landing area caused an MH-53 Pave Low
(file photo of type, right) to crash Nov. 23.
The MH-53, assigned to the 20th Special Operations Squadron,
crashed nine miles east of Bagram, Afghanistan, while supporting
Operation Mountain Resolve.
Four of the six crewmembers on board, and one US Army passenger
died in the accident.
The accident investigation board also cited several contributing
factors to the crash. One of these factors was the subsequent
failure of the No. 1 engine when the demands of the high altitude
and high-gross weight caused an over-temperature and compressor
stall. Insufficient written guidance on checking the auxiliary fuel
tank jettison system was also cited.
The investigation board comprised helicopter systems experts,
medical, legal and aircrew advisers.
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