Defence Chief Bipin Rawat's Chopper Crashed Due to Pilot Error, Indian Air Force Says
06:08 GMT 15.01.2022 (Updated: 10:13 GMT 30.11.2022)
Indian Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) Bipin Rawat and 13 others were killed in an Indian Air Force (IAF) Mi-17V5 helicopter crash in Tamil Nadu last month. Gen. Rawat was the country's first CDS.
Pilot error caused the helicopter crash that led to the death of India's top general, Bipin Rawat, his wife, and several other defence personnel, including crew members, the Court of Inquiry investigating the matter has found.
According to the findings, unexpected weather conditions, leading to the formation of clouds in the sky, forced the "disorientation" of the pilots, which resulted in the tragic crash.
"The accident was the result of entry into clouds due to unexpected change in weather in the valley. This led to spatial disorientation of the pilot, resulting in controlled flight into terrain (CFIT)", it said.
As per IATA (International Air Transport Association), CFIT is when a pilot who's in complete control of an aircraft unintentionally flies into terrain, water, or another obstacle, subsequently resulting in a collision with the aforementioned subjects.
© Photo : Ministry of Defence/Government of India The Chief of Army Staff, General Bipin Rawat
The Chief of Army Staff, General Bipin Rawat
© Photo : Ministry of Defence/Government of India
CFIT is among the most common factors behind crashes like that of General Rawat, particularly during bad weather in hilly terrain.
Rawat, a former Indian Army chief, was appointed the nation's first chief of defence staff (CDS) on 30 December 2019. He was also head of a separate department in the Defence Ministry named the Department of Military Affairs.
Even a month after his death, the Indian government is yet to name his successor.