Army’s Cheetah crashes in Arunachal, 2 pilots killed | India News – Times of India


GUWAHATI: The Army’s aviation wing lost two pilots, Lt Col VVB Reddy and Major Jayanth A, when their Cheetah helicopter crashed in Arunachal on Thursday. The obsolete single-engine Cheetah and Chetak helicopters, which are of the design vintage of the 1960s and lack modern avionics and in-built safety mechanisms, have had a particularly poor track record. In Arunachal, this was the third Army helicopter crash in five months and the 13th air disaster in 15 years, which have claimed 92 military personnel and civilians, including Arunachal’s former CM Dorjee Khandu.

Army chopper crashes in Arunachal Pradesh

CM Pema Khandu tweeted his condolences to the family.
The single-engine, multi-role helicopter was flying from Missamari in Assam’s Sonitpur district to Tawang in Arunachal, close to the Chinese border, when it encountered bad weather. It crashed while trying to return to Missamari.
Guwahati-based defence PRO Lt Col Mahendra Rawat said the helicopter was flying near Bomdila in Arunachal when it lost contact with the ATC around 9.15am. Five search parties of the Army, SSB and ITBP set out immediately and the burnt wreckage of the helicopter was found near Banglajaap village, east of Mandala and more than 60km from Bomdila. He said probe was on to ascertain the cause of the accident.
Arunachal Pradesh police special investigation cell SP Rohit Rajbir Singh said villagers saw the aircraft go down and catch fire. They reached the crash site around 12.30pm and found a smouldering, mangled wreck. The remote location is out of network coverage and was enveloped by dense fog Thursday, with visibility as low as five metres, Singh said.
On October 21 last year, an Army helicopter crashed in Upper Siang district, killing all five military flyers aboard. Almost three weeks before that, a Cheetah of the Army crashed near Tawang, killing the pilot.

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