New helicopter safety measures planned following crash report

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 04 May, 2006, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 04 May, 2006, 12:00am

Updated at 6.39pm:
The Civil Aviation Department said on Thursday it had introduced new safety measures in the wake of a new government report on a helicopter accident, which killed two men in 2003.

The department said it had implemented most recommendations contained in the report. These included introducing:

  • a minimum height for helicopter routes and new flight procedures;
  • improved training for chopper crews;
  • mandatory wearing of helmets inside helicopters, and;
  • a longer overlap between helicopter flight shifts.

The fatal crash involved a Government Flying Service helicopter. It had smashed into a hillside on Lantau Island on August 26, 2003.

The helicopter, a French-made Eurocopter 155 B1, had departed from Chek Lap Kok airport about 10pm that day. It then cut across Lantau via the Tung Chung Pass to pick up a patient on Cheung Chau.

Pilot Pang Fu-kwok, 34, and crewman Dickson Chan Man-tik, 31, were killed in the crash.

A government spokesman said on Thursday a team of inspectors had completed investigations. They gave their recommendations in the report to departments responsible for aviation.

The spokesman said: 'The investigation report analyses the circumstances of the accident, identifies possible causes, and makes nine recommendations to the Government Flying Service, the department and the manufacturer of the Personal Locator Beacon for further enhancing flight safety.'

In response to the report, the department said further safety measures would be put in place as soon as possible.

The report can be downloaded from the department's website

Copies of the report are also available for sale at the Publications Sales Unit of the Information Services Department in Room 402, Murray Building, Garden Road, Central.