CDS Chopper Crash: Probe Panel Rules Out Mechanical Failure, Sabotage

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The Indian Air Force’s Mi-17 V5 chopper crash in which Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat and 13 others were killed was caused by bad weather, clarified the IAF probe panel on Friday.

The Tri-Services Court of Inquiry into the Mi-17 V5 accident, in its preliminary findings, ruled out mechanical failure, sabotage, or negligence as a cause of the accident.

The accident was a result of entry into clouds due to an unexpected change in weather conditions in the valley. This led to spatial disorientation of the pilot resulting in a Controlled Flight into Terrain, they said.

Based on its findings, sources suggested, the Court of Inquiry has made certain recommendations that are being reviewed.

The inquiry team said that it analyzed the Flight Data Recorder and Cockpit Voice Recorder besides questioning all available witnesses to determine the most probable cause of the accident.

CDS Gen Bipin Rawat, his wife Madhulika, his defence advisor Brigadier LS Lidder, staff officer to the Chief of Defence Staff, Lt Col Harjinder Singh and decorated pilot Group Captain Varun Singh were among 13 others killed in the crash near Coonoor in Tamil Nadu.

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