Initial findings point to engine failure in plane crash
By Khanyisa Tabata
25 September 2009
Preliminary findings are indicating that it could have been engine failure that was responsible for Thursday’s SA Airlink plane crash in Merebank, south of Durban.
According to initial reports, the SA Airlink Jetstream 41 Turboprop aircraft, which had twin engines, broke in two after crashing into a school ground in Merebank, shortly after take-off from the Durban International Airport around 8am yesterday.
In a statement spokesperson for the Civil Aviation Authority Phindiwe Gwebu said the prelimary phases of the investigations were complete and they can confirm the possibility of an engine failure could have caused the crash.
It is not yet known when the final report will be released.
Gwebu said the wreckage could now be removed since the crash investigators have completed collecting all the physical evidence at the scene, and have documented evidence from the crash site and other parts of the plane.
She said the crash investigators are expected to return to Johannesburg later this afternoon, where investigators will continue to examine their evidence, interact with various experts, including the manufactures of the plane, in order to understand what exactly happened.
Four people sustained injuries in the crash; two pilots are in a critical condition in ICU; a flight attendant suffered back and neck injuries; and a municipal worker on the ground was injured and taken to hospital