Military OV-10 planes grounded after Edwin Andrews Air Base accident
ZAMBOANGA CITY – Air Force Chief Oscar Rabena has ordered the grounding of the military’s 10 remaining OV-10 planes as investigation into the November 9 crash of a similar type of aircraft here continued.
During a visit here Friday, Rabena said the grounded OV-10s would. undergo strict inspection to ensure they had no defects.
On November 9, an OV-10 crashed at the runway of the Edwin Andrews Air Base here while trying to land on a single engine.
Both pilots had bailed out before the plane rammed onto the ground.
Investigators had theorized that wind factor may have contributed to the incident as planes were known to fly even on single engines only.
Rabena said he was expecting the investigation of the crash to wrap up anytime next week.
He said additional actions on the remaining OV-10s, which the military would normally use for surveillance and bomb runs, would depend on the outcome of the investigation.
Major General Jose Tony Villarete, commander of the 3rd Air Division here, said he was confident the OV-10s would fly again in about a week’s time.
Villarete said the OV-10s might have been “old design” but their parts are always new.
“Each part is new because we change them regularly,” he said.
Meanwhile, Rabena said the Air Force’s aging fleet wouldsoon be replaced by newer aircraft.
“There are projects na nasa pipeline na rin like acquisition of rescue helicopters, light wing aircraft,” he said.
Air Force spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Ernesto Okol said between December this year and January next year, they were expecting delivery of brand new basic trainer planes and brand new combat utility helicopters.
Rabena said the military also submitted to Malacañang a list of aircraft to be acquired under the medium term capability upgrade program.
The list included purchase of aircraft similar to the OV-10s in capability, he said.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.