AIB to enhance accident Investigation with the deployment of drones

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….. build an AIB school, partner NCAT, Crownfield, others

The Accident Investigation Bureau Nigeria, AIB-N has concluded plans to improve on its air accident investigation with drones

To this end, the Bureau is the process of getting certification from the regulator of the industry, the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority NCAA.

At the Gateway forum of the League of Airports and Aviation Correspondents, LAAC, the Commissioner AIB-N, Engr. Akin Olateru said before the certification is approved, officers of the Bureau would have to be trained on the operation of the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, UAV, popularly called drones.
“To operate a drone you need a license and we are sorting that out the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority NCAA, in getting the license part of the requirements is to train your people on how to navigate the drone which we are certified, they have to be licensed, the operator has to be licensed  by the NCAA, so we are in the process of normalizing all the documents that is where we are.”

He explained that the deployment of drones would enhance service delivery and that is why as an agency of government, they continually review their processes.
“We constantly looking at what we do, how we do it and see how we can make it better or simplify the processes or get a better result or better performance.
He added, “We are in the certification process that is the reason why we did not deploy drones in that last occurrence, we will do God forbid the next event.”

L-R Spokesman AIB, Mr. Tunji Oketunbi, AIB Commissioner, Engr. Akin Olateru and the Chairman LAAC, Mr. Olusegun Koiki

In the area of manpower development, Olateru said, the AIB as at today has 36 trained air safety investigators trained in-house, within and outside the country.
He noted that the trainings are continuous, adding that a cost cannot be put to the trainings or either for Investigating and concluding an accident because a lot were involved both in naira and foreign exchange.
The AIB helsman explained how air accident Investigators are trained and the various stages, “When you come in as a mechanical engineer to AIB first thing we want to do is to send you to NCAT to train you on aircraft maintenance engineers program and you become a licensed aircraft engineer and then from there we send you to Southern California Safety Institute in the US for a 2 weeks course on accident investigation and then you go to Crownfield University 6 weeks program on accident investigation, you do intermediate and the advance course and then there are other courses which comes in between which makes you a better investigator. 

“The thing about training, accident investigator is, training is unending, it is not you gone to Crownfield that is No. Even here on site, we do training in-house we pick up accident reports, we review it, we use it to train the younger ones, training is something you can exactly put cost to because it’s vast, it so unending, it is a continuous process.”

To save money in the training of Investigators and other staff, the AIB boss said, the Federal Government had approved an AIB training school to be built in Abuja.
According to him, the project is ongoing and would save the country all the US dollars spent on training overseas and help bring money to the country when people from outside Nigeria come to the school for training.

“We too can earn money, we too can train Africans, we can train people from Europe on accident investigation and the auxiliary cost that goes with it.”
Olateru explained that the curriculum for the school had been developed with world class training institutions, like the Nigerian college of Aviation Technology, NCAT, Zaria, Crownfield University and Singapore Training Institute.

“We have drew up a curriculum Crownfield University, Singapore training Institute and NCAT, so we want to make it a world class institution because we really want to push this training so that we can earn some good money from it for the country and save us money as well.”
He stressed that the school was not going to be in competition with NCAT because they were not licensed to train, added the goal of the school would be to produce world class training.


“We are doing this in conjunction with NCAT, we are not licensed to train but NCAT is but we have developed this curriculum together with a great input from world class institutions round the world because this is new to NCAT as well and once the training school is built we will move in because we want to produce a world class training and that is what we are trying to achieve so that we can try to make the best out of having the training school.

Engr. Akin Olateru promised that he is determined to take the AIB-N to an enviable height and place to work.

“I  would like to make AIB an eviable place to work, a world class institution, these are the things I would like to achieve before I take a bow.”