“Why the helicopter Herbert Wigwe boarded crashed” – US

The United States’ National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has provided a fresh update on the helicopter crash that claimed the life of Dr. Herbert Wigwe, former Group CEO of Access Holdings, his wife, son, and two others.

The Nigerian Safety Investigation Bureau (NSIB) confirmed the reception of the preliminary report from the NTSB regarding the incident.

The helicopter crash, which occurred on February 9, involved an Airbus Helicopter EC130B4 in Halloran Springs, California.

"Why the helicopter Herbert Wigwe boarded crashed - US
Herbert Wigwe.

According to initial findings from the NTSB, the helicopter suffered catastrophic damage and caught fire before the crash, primarily attributed to adverse weather conditions.

Bimbo Oladeji, the Director of Public Affairs and Consumer Protection at NSIB, disclosed the details of the NTSB report in a statement released in Lagos today.

Speaking on the NTSB report, Oladeji said;

The preliminary report on the Airbus Helicopter EC130B4, registered as N130CZ and operated by Orbic Air, LLC, under Part 135 regulations for on-demand flights, outlines crucial details surrounding the tragic incident.

“Departing from Bob Hope Airport in Burbank, California, the helicopter journeyed to Boulder City Municipal Airport in Nevada via Palm Springs International Airport.

“However, during its flight, adverse weather conditions characterized by rain and a mix of snow were encountered, as reported by witnesses.

“Reports from law enforcement and eyewitnesses also indicated that several individuals travelling along Interstate 15 (I-15) observed a “fireball” in the area, prompting calls to emergency services.

“Subsequently, the wreckage of the helicopter was discovered in the high, mountainous desert and scrub-brush-covered terrain near Halloran Springs, California.

“Analysis of the accident site revealed a scattered debris pattern about 300 ft along a 120° magnetic, indicating a trajectory from an initial impact point which was a 1.5 ft deep, 12 ft long and 10 ft wide ground crater.

“Containing fragments of the right landing gear skid, cockpit wiring, and cabin floor structure. The right skid step protruded upward at a 45° angle at the extreme eastern edge of the ground crater.

“All major helicopter components were identified at the accident site. The helicopter’s fuselage was fragmented, and the cockpit and cabin were destroyed.

“Some debris and vegetation displayed thermal damage, indicative of the extent of the collision’s force. The flight control tubes and linkages leading up to the flight control servos were fragmented and continuity could not be verified.

“All three pitch control links were attached at the swashplate and blade pitch change horns. The main rotor blades were fragmented and broomstrawed, and the blade sleeves and tips were present.

“Data analysis utilized sources including automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast (ADS-B) data, operator personnel reports, and eyewitness accounts to reconstruct the flight path and sequence of events leading to the accident.”

Show More