Navy grounds all Augusta helicopters after mishap
All the Augusta Westland helicopters of the Philippine Navy were grounded following a mishap in Cagayan province on Sept. 26, the military reported on Sunday.
Vice Admiral Adeluis Bordado, Philippine Navy chief, said based on initial investigation the AW109 helicopter was around three feet from the ground when it was tilted due to a strong wind.
"The incident happened when the aircraft was attempting to land on its designated station after it returned from conducting a mission in support of Northern Luzon Command’s Internal Security Operations," he said.
However, Bordado said the investigation to determine the cause of the incident is being conducted by the Philippine Navy and the crew.
"We are conducting a thorough and exhaustive investigation to ascertain the cause. These actions are all geared at shedding light on the incident and to prevent a future occurrence," he said.
Bordado said the Philippine Navy has a total of five AW109 within its inventory and the other four were grounded.
"International experts from Augusta are assisting in the matter of investigation. The said AW109 (NH435) is undergoing assessment and is part of the ongoing investigation. All AW109 units are grounded as a matter of procedure," he said.
Bordado said one of the pilots got bruises.He said they were all brought to the hospital for medical check up as part of procedure.
"The pilots and crew sustained very minor injuries and only stayed in the medical facility as a matter of medical procedure," he said. Robina Asido/DMS