Two member DGCA team begins inquiry into plane crash

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Ludhiana, Oct 30 (UNI) A two-member team of the Directorate General Civil Aviation (DGCA) arrived here today and visited the crash site at Jugiana village where the Punjab government's official plane, a C-90 King Air, crashed yesterday while on a test flight from Chandigarh to Ludhiana.

The team members, Munish Chopra and D C Sharma, inspected the wreckage of the six seater aircraft. Officials of the state Civil Aviation department and district officials accompanied the two-member team to the accident site.

The team retreaved the data recorder from the wreckage and collected other samples from the crash site. The team would submit their report to the DGCA authorities within the three months.

A team of the Punjab Police forensic department also visited the crash site and inspected the plane's wreckage.

The aircraft on a test flight from Chandigarh to Ludhiana and back had crashed yesterday, killing the pilot Capt Dalip Kataria and co-pilot Manjit Singh.

The plane was on a mandatory technical check-up flight prior to a VIP trip when it seemed to stall and begin losing height and crashed around 1015 hours yesterday. The ill-fated plane had undergone a scheduled technical propeller service in Mumbai on Monday and had flown into Chandigarh the following day.

The plane had also cleared the mandatory airworthiness certification from the DGCA about threeweeks ago.

Capt Kataria and Manjit Singh, who were conducting the check up flight, were among the most experienced pilots in the country, having logged 5000 and 3000 hours respectively. They had earlier handled large commercial liners including 747s before being inducted by the Punjab government.

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