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Aero India 2023

Human error caused crash, no problem with Sukhois

A file photo of Sukhoi 30 MKI

NEW DELHI (PTI): A joint probe by India and Russia into the crash of IAF's Sukhoi fighter aircraft over Jaisalmer has indicated 'human error' as the cause of the mishap and that there was "no problem" with the plane.

"The pilot of the aircraft is said to have inadvertently switched off the flight controls in the cockpit that apparently caused the crash," Defence Ministry officials said today.

"The joint probe by IAF and Russian experts into the Su-30MKI crash has found that there is no problem with the aircraft," they told PTI here.

The Su-30MKI, the frontline combat aircraft of the IAF, had crashed while flying in a formation over Jaisalmer on April 30, killing the co-pilot. While the pilot Wing Commander S V Munje, bailed out safely, co-pilot Wing Commander P S Nara died after the ejection seat failed.

The IAF had ordered a court of inquiry, which was joined by 20 Russian experts from the original Sukhoi equipment manufacturer. The probe, officials said, revealed that the ejection seat's "harness had broken", leading to loss of life.

"The court of inquiry has not yet completed compilation of its report. Whatever led to the fatality will come out once the report is submitted," they said. However, to buttress the point, they said: "the safety record of Sukhois is almost unrivalled."

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