Human error in president’s chopper incident: Praful Patel

February 26th, 2009 - 3:09 pm ICT by IANS  

Pratibha PatilNew Delhi, Feb 26 (IANS) Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel Thursday said that human error led to the Feb 9 incident in which President Pratibha Patil’s chopper narrowly escaped crashing into an Air India aircraft in Mumbai.
“There was human error in the incident, the matter is being investigated. We have taken serious note of the matter,” Patel said while relying to a query of K.S. Manoj, a Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) MP from Kerala, in the Lok Sabha.

In a major safety breach on Feb 9, a New Delhi-bound Air India flight with 170 passengers and 10-member crew narrowly escaped colliding with a helicopter which was part of the president’s fleet, minutes before taking off from Mumbai Monday morning.

This is the first time that the government has accepted that there was human error in the incident, although, the minister didn’t name the person responsible for the incident.

Patel also said that the government has recruited a sizeable number of people to positions in Air Traffic Control, who will be working with their counterparts in the armed forces to avoid such incidents in future.

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