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SOURCE: TIMES NOW

A month after a shocking helicopter crash led to the death of India’s first Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat, his wife and 12 other military personnel in Tamil Nadu, a tri-services court of inquiry cited “spatial disorientation of pilot” as cause for the incident.

The probe committee into chopper crash that killed CDS Bipin Rawat has submitted its preliminary findings, and the Court of Inquiry has ruled out mechanical failure, sabotage or negligence as cause of chopper crash. “The accident was a result of entry into clouds due to unexpected change in weather conditions in the Valley,” the Indian Air Force said on Friday.

Full statement of the Indian Air Force

The tri-services Court of Inquiry into the Mi-17 V5 accident on 8 December 2021 has submitted its preliminary findings. The inquiry team analysed the Flight Data Recorder and Cockpit Voice Recorder besides questioning all available witnesses to determine the most probable cause of the accident.

The Court of Inquiry has ruled out mechanical failure, sabotage or negligence as cause of the accident.

The accident was a result of entry into clouds due to unexpected change in weather conditions in the Valley. This led to spatial disorientation of the pilot, resulting in Controlled Flight to Terrain. Based on its findings, the Court of Inquiry has made certain recommendations, which are being reviewed.

CDS Rawat, along with his wife Madhulika and 12 other defence officials were en route to the Defence Services Staff College in Wellington on December 8 when the IAF’s Mi-17V5 helicopter crashed in Coonoor in the hilly Nilgiris just 7 minutes before landing at its destination in Tamil Nadu.