Watch: Scary Video Shows Final Moments Before Coast Guard's Helicopter Crashed in Kochi
The Coast Guard helicopter crashed immediately after the takeoff from Kochi Airport, when CG 855 was at about 30-40 ft above ground, and the pilot's skills saved 3 lives.
A helicopter belonging to the Indian Coast Guard crashed on Sunday, March 27, 2023, injuring one person at the Cochin International Airport Limited (CIAL). The Coast Guard helicopter was an India-made Dhruv ALH Mk III chopper, based out of a Coast Guard complex situated at the CIAL in Kochi. The incident occurred moments after the takeoff from its enclave, but the "presence of mind" of the pilot saved the lives of three persons onboard, a release said. The chopper took off from the complex at about 12.25 pm for "inflight checks after fitment of control rods" on the aircraft.
Now a new video has surfaced on the social media, revealing the moments when the crash took place in Kochi. As seen in the video, the ALH made by HAL wearing Coast Guard livery of Blue and White crashed in the ground shortly after the take off from the airport. As reported by PTI, the chopper lost control when it was about 30-40 ft above the ground.
An #ALH Mk 3 of the ICG today met with an accident near the main runway at Kochi Airport. All crew members are safe.
HAL and ICG are working towards resuming the operations of the grounded ALH MK3 fleet, Team had carried out extensive and satisfactory ground trials on 26 Mar 2023 pic.twitter.com/BcLruzuFka — Defence Decode® (@DefenceDecode) March 26, 2023
However, the pilot showed "exemplary professionalism and presence of mind" with bare minimum controls and manoeuvred the aircraft away from blocking the main runway of the international airport, the ICG statement said "Prior to the inflight checks, HAL (Hindustan Aeronautics Limited) and ICG teams had carried out extensive and satisfactory ground trials," the ICG said.
"Immediately after takeoff, when CG 855 was at about 30-40 ft above ground, the cyclic controls (which controls longitudinal and lateral movement of aircraft) did not respond." The pilot "cushioned the landing to the extent possible" in order to save the three persons on board, it added. One person has a minor injury in his hand, sources told PTI.
The chopper's rotors and airframe have been damaged, and an inquiry has been ordered to ascertain the cause of the crash. Meanwhile, CIAL said airport operations were suspended for two hours after the Advanced Light Helicopter of the Coast Guard met with the accident.
"The ALH was removed from the operational area around 2 PM and the runway has been cleared substantially after safety inspections, and flight operations have been resumed," CIAL said in a statement.