Accident: Valan AN26 at Abidjan on Oct 14th 2017, came to stop in the sea

Accident: Valan AN26 at Abidjan on Oct 14th 2017, came to stop in the sea

 

A Valan Air Cargo Antonov AN-26, registration ER-AVB performing a charter freight flight from Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso) to Abidjan (Cote de Ivoire) with 4 crew and 6 passengers, was on approach to Abidjan's runway 03 at 09:45L (09:45Z) in poor weather when the aircraft came to a stop in the sea about 650 meters/2130 feet ahead of the runway threshold. Four occupants were killed, six occupants were taken to hospitals with injuries.

Initial reports by the airport had suggested the aircraft had just attempted to depart but overran runway 21.

Later emergency services reported the aircraft was arriving from Burkina Faso on approach from the sea side in thunderstorms, gusting winds and lightning when the aircraft ended up in the waters ahead of the runway.

Cote de Ivoire's Minister of Interior reported there were 4 fatalities and 6 injured. 6 occupants were Moldovans, 4 were French, all French are amongst the survivors.

On Oct 15th 2017 the airline reported after talking to their technician on board and surviving the accident, that the aircraft was on final approach to Abidjan arriving from Ouagadougou, both engines were working normally, when the aircraft impacted waters. It is unclear why the aircraft fell into the waters, the weather characterized by thunderstorms accompanied by lightning and heavy precipitation may have played a role. The captain (63) had accumulated more than 24,000 hours of total flying experience, 13,000 of which were on the AN-26, the first officer - youngest crew member - had accumulated 2,200 hours of flying experience. Both were killed in the accident, in addition to the flight engineer and another company technician. The black boxes were recovered, the Moldovian CAA is going to join the investigation. The aircraft had last been at the Antonov facilities in February 2017 and had been issued a certificate of airworthiness by Antonov.

According to the aircraft registry by the CAA Moldova (list compiled on Oct 10th 2017) Valan Air operates AN-26s with the tailnumbers ER-AVA, ER-AVB and ER-AZO.