, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun, 19 – The Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA) says a preliminary report of the investigation into the FlySax plane crash is expected on Thursday.
Appearing before the National Assembly Transport and Public Works Committee, KCAA Director General Gilbert Kibe warned against speculation on the probable cause of the crash that killed 10 people in the Aberdares two weeks ago.
He told the committee that the pilot was diverted to Jomo Kenyatta International Airport on her own request because of two connecting passengers on board.
“The crew requested to go to Jomo Kenyatta International Airport. They contacted the Eldoret Tower and asked for permission to drop some of the passengers who had a connecting flight and were already late due to flight delay in Kitale,” said Gilbert Kibe.
Kibe refuted claims that the pilot was misled by air traffic controllers to fly at 11,000 feet above sea level but declined to elaborate, only saying he cannot comment further since the matter is still under investigation.
“The crew chose to fly at 11,000ft they were cleared to go up to 13,000ft but preferred to remain at 11,000ft. The reason for that I do not know and I cannot say much since the matter is still under investigation. But the news that you are reading from media is false,” said Kibe.
Concerning the state of the plane, Kibe said it was well equipped and it was last serviced on May 14, 2018 therefore it was airworthy on that fateful day.
Kibe added that the Emergency Locator Transmitter (ELT) was also working, contrary to alleged accusations that it was faulty which led to delayed location of the plane.
However, the committee chairman David Pkosing and a member Chris Wamalwa of Kiminini insisted that there was professional negligence and demanded action against those responsible.
“It is common sense to have known that the pilot was flying at a lower altitude and she needed to be advised to go higher. Why didn’t someone guide her? There is profession negligence and someone should be held accountable,” said Wamalwa.
The victims of the Fly Sax Plane crash have all since been buried.