4 Dec 2009

Vanuatu crash prompts call for more pilot training

7:31 am on 4 December 2009

The Civil Aviation Authority in Vanuatu says pilots must undergo training for flying over mountainous terrain to avoid a similar crash that killed two people in West Santo last December.

An investigation by New Zealand's Transport, Accident and Investigation Commission has found the plane, carrying nine people, was overloaded by 198 kilograms or by 7 percent.

The Acting Director of the Vanuatu Civil Aviation Authority, Donald Wouloseje says the weight of the plane meant the pilot found it difficult to maneuver the aircraft over a ridge.

"By early next year we'll be assessing the issues of at least how operators will need to do some training on mountain flying and maybe we need to get to the CAA New Zealand to get a general seminar or training to avoid this deficiency in mountain flying."

Donald Wouloseje says emphasis will also be placed on the importance of keeping within the aircraft weight limit.