PAF bomber plane crash-lands in Zamboanga; pilots slightly injuredBy Julie Alipala, Karen Boncocan
Inquirer Mindanao, INQUIRER.net
ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines — An OV-10 Air Force bomber plane crash-landed at the runway of the Edwin Andrews Air Base in Sta. Maria village here Wednesday morning, a military official said.
Lieutenant Colonel Ernesto Okol, Philippine Air Force spokesman, said the pilots of the plane were safe.
Okol said the plane was trying to land at the EAAB when one of its engines conked out a little before 9 a.m.
The pilots (the military withheld their names) made an emergency landing but the plane still rammed the runway, he said.
Okol would not say what damage the plane had sustained but other informants said it was a total wreck.
Colonel Emeraldo Magnaye, commander of the 503rd Wing Command, said the plane was damaged but also would not say to what extent.
“The pilots had ejected before the plane smashed onto the ground,” said a source, who requested anonymity.
Western Mindanao Command deputy commander Brigadier General Gerardo Layug also confirmed the source’s statement.
“The two pilots were able to bail out from the aircraft and they are both safe and we received initial report that the plane attempted to land with only one engine working,” Layug said.
Magnaye said the pilots were safe but had been brought to a hospital for treatment of minor injuries.
“No severe injuries were incurred by our pilots,” he said.
Okol said Lieutenant General Oscar Rabena, PAF commanding general, had ordered an investigation into the accident.
“But there are no orders yet for grounding of other OV-10s,” he said.
Magnaye said the investigation team was coming from the 15th Strike Wing based in Sangley Point.
Wednesday’s crash was the latest in the series of crashes that had brought the number of PAF’s air assets down.
On October 1, three Air Force men, including two pilots, were also killed when a Huey helicopter crashed in Patikul, Sulu.
The pilots were making a precautionary landing at Camp Baladad in Sitio (sub-village) Tubig Magtuh in Barangay Panglayahan when the helicopter suffered “loss of power” for still unknown reasons.
First posted 11:12 am | Wednesday, November 9th, 2011