Preliminary Report on the Elmina Private Jet Crash: Insights and Findings

The Malaysian Air Accident Investigation Bureau (AAIB) has published an initial report on the devastating private jet crash that occurred in Elmina, Malaysia, on August 17, 2023. The accident resulted in the death of eight individuals on board and two bystanders. 


The report, released on September 15, 2023, indicates that the flight recorder has provided crucial information that could help determine the cause of the crash, with particular attention being paid to the aircraft’s flight control systems. Despite some difficulties in retrieving data from the flight recorder, a team of specialists at the L3Harris Technologies facility in St. Petersburg, Florida, was able to extract valuable information. 


The AAIB will include a transcript of the recording in its final report. The preliminary report also provides information about the pilots and the condition of the Hawker Beechcraft 390 Premier 1 aircraft involved in the crash. The pilot in command (PIC) was a 41-year-old Malaysian man with over 6,000 flying hours, and the co-pilot was a 44-year-old Malaysian man with over 9,000 flying hours. Both pilots were properly licensed and qualified for the flight according to existing regulations. The aircraft had a valid Certificate of Airworthiness and had been maintained in accordance with regulations. 


The crash occurred during daylight hours under clear visibility and favorable weather conditions. There was no evidence to suggest that any physiological factors affected the performance of the flight crew. The AAIB also reported that a massive fire engulfed the aircraft immediately after it crashed. Based on visual and field analysis, it appears that the aircraft’s right wing tip hit solid ground first, followed by the nose at high energy. This high-energy collision resulted in fatal injuries to all occupants of the aircraft. The report concluded that this level of impact forces and collision pattern were beyond human tolerance, indicating that this was not a survivable accident. In a statement accompanying the report, the Malaysian Transport Ministry expressed its gratitude to NTSB and Singapore’s Transport Safety Investigation Bureau (TSIB) for their assistance in AAIB’s investigations.

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