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Burmese Air Force probes fighter jet crash

New Delhi (Mizzima) - The Burmese Air Force has formed a group to investigate the crash of a F-7 fighter jet last Friday that killed the pilot, sources in the Air Force said.

The group will consist of a number of officers, including an engineering officer (EO) of the Air Force Engineering Department as well as the commander of Rangoon’s Mingalardon Air Force base.

The source, requesting not to be named due to fear of reprisal, told Mizzima that the investigation process is currently in the pre-survey phase.

According to findings so far, the pilot, Captain Pyae Phyo Myo, was test flying the Chinese made F-7 jet and crashed due to the absence of any landing gear being deployed.

“It is possible that the pilot, when he was unable to deploy the wheels upon landing, might have pressed the eject button, as the button was pressed and he was found having a parachute tangled around his neck,” the source said.

However the source, an Air Force engineer, explained that the ejector seat for planes works only above an altitude of 5,000 feet, and with the parachute found as it was wrapped around the dead pilot’s body, it is likely that the eject button was pressed just as the plane was about to land.

The investigation process could take about a month to conclude, assessed the source.

The F-7 fighter requires full servicing after every 3,000 hours of flight time. As part of a deal, China provides technical training to Burmese Air Force officers for servicing the aircraft, added the source.

Captain Pyae Phyo Myo, age 31, was the son of a retired Major and a graduate of the Defense Services Academy (DSA) 42nd intake.

He leaves behind a wife and son.

Edited by Mungpi

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 26 January 2010 19:56 )  

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