All helicopters of Thai ministry grounded for safety check

16:16, August 19, 2010      

Email | Print | Subscribe | Comments | Forum 

The remaining 14 six-seater AS350 helicopters operated by Thailand's Natural Resources and Environment Ministry have been grounded for safety check after one crashed in northern Thailand on Tuesday, the Bangkok Post's website reported Thursday.

Natural Resources and Environment Minister Suwit Khunkitti said on Thursday the AS350s, which were built and certificated in the United States, would not be allowed back in the air until they had been thoroughly checked.

Some parts of the helicopters have been recycled for use, Suwit admitted.

The air force is in charge of determining the cause of crash as it is believed a fact-finding committee would be set up to investigate, he said.

The ill-fated AS350 helicopter took off from an air base in the northern Phitsanulok province at about 7.30 a.m. on Tuesday, heading for Phu Phayak mountain in the northern Nan province's Chalerm Prakiat district, where three senior state officials were due to preside over a ceremony for a reforestration project.

The helicopter took off in heavy rain, lost contact with the air base and disappeared from the radar about 30 minutes later.

All five people aboard, including three state officials, and the pilot and flight engineer, were killed in the crash.

Thailand's Natural Resources and Environment Ministry has 14 remaining AS350 helicopters, but only 12 are rated airworthy.

Source: Xinhua


  • Do you have anything to say?


Special Coverage
  • Premier Wen Jiabao visits Hungary, Britain, Germany
  • From drought to floods
Major headlines
Editor's Pick
  • Staff members watch a screen showing the blast-off of the Long March-2FT1 carrier rocket loaded with Tiangong-1 unmanned space lab module at Beijing Aerospace Control Center, Sept. 29, 2011. Commander-in-chief of China's manned space program Chang Wanquan announced Thursday night that the launch of Tiangong-1 space lab module was successful. (Xinhua/Wang Shen)
  • Chinese President Hu Jintao watches the launch of Tiangong-1 space lab module at Beijing Aerospace Control Center in Beijing, capital of China, Sept. 29, 2011. Other members of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, including Wu Bangguo, Jia Qinglin, Li Changchun, Xi Jinping, Li Keqiang and Zhou Yongkang, are also present. (Xinhua/Rao Aimin)
  • The graphics shows the launch procedures of the carrier rocket of Tiangong-1 space lab module, Long March-2FT1 on Sept. 29, 2011. (Xinhua/Lu Zhe)
  • Image taken from Beijing Aerospace Control Center shows a Long March-2FT1 carrier rocket loaded with Tiangong-1 unmanned space lab module blasting off from the launch pad at the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China's Gansu Province, Sept. 29, 2011. (Xinhua)
  • On Sept. 28, tourists travel around the Mingshashan Scenic Area in Dunhuang, Gansu province by camel. With the National Day vacation right around the corner, more and more tourists from home and abroad are going to Dunhuang. Riding on a camel, they travel in the desert to enjoy the cities rare form of natural scenery. (Xinhua/Zhang Weixian)
  • Chinese forest armed forces work together with forest firefighters on Sept. 28. (Xinhua/Chai Liren)
Hot Forum Discussion