Indigenous airline, Africa World Airlines (AWA), has allayed fears of the travelling public over the safety of one of its aircraft which was involved in a bird strike during the landing phase at the Kumasi Airport on Sunday March 11, 2018.
AWA’s Embraer ERJ145 aircraft operating AW108 hit a bird during the landing phase at the Kumasi Airport last Sunday. The airline, as per its high safety standards, flew in an engineer to thoroughly assess the damage to the aircraft before operating the returning flight.
AWA in a statement signed by Captain Samuel Thompson, the Chief Operations Officer, said: “The engineer, after his inspection and assessment did not find anything wrong with the aircraft but because the bird struck the aircraft on the engine cowling, he decided to run the engine to assure himself that there was no damage to the engine.
The aircraft was declared serviceable and departed from Kumasi at 5:54pm on Sunday and landed safely in Accra at 6:21pm,”
Encroachment of lands in and around airports and the activities of encroachers attract scavenging birds to airports, which are to be free of birds to prevent damage to aircraft and ensure the safety of passengers at all times.
However, increasing human activity in and around the Kumasi Airport and the Kotoka International Airport is attracting birds to these areas.
The Ghana Airports Company (GACL) has recently embarked on a project to fence the entire Kotoka International Airport (KIA) lands to curb the activities of encroachers. It has also undertaken demolishing exercises around the Kumasi airport.
“We will want to ensure the travelling public that safety being our first priority, we will always operate t the highest standards of safety well above the minimum requirements and our engineers will only release an aircraft that is completely serviceable to fly and our pilots will only fly an aircraft that is safe to fly. The safety of the travelling public is dear to our hearts and we will strive to maintain and improve the safety standards we have achieved,” AWA said.
AWA–bridging a gap in domestic air service
AWA, has for the past few months, being operating additional flights between Accra and regional destinations Kumasi and Tamale.
This became imperative in bridging the gap in domestic air service provision after Starbow, a domestic airline operator, temporarily suspended operations after an incident at the KIA that left four passengers injured and a Committee set up to investigate same.
“We had to increase our frequency to Tamale and Kumasi to try and help bridge the gap left after Starbow suspended operations. It is a national duty so we responded. We didn’t anticipate it but we have done what we can to ensure passengers travelling to these areas have flights available,” Richard Kyere, Dy. Commercial, AWA, told AviationGhana.