Pegasus pilots investigated over fatal crash in Istanbul


Following the crash of the Pegasus Airlines Boeing 737-800 at Sabiha Gökçen Airport (SAW) that left three dead and 179 injured, the two pilots will be questioned by the police once they leave the hospital. 

The Istanbul Anatolian Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office announced that the two pilots of PC2193 will be heard upon suspicion of “negligence that led to death and injury,” according to the state channel TRT.

Security footage from the airport as well as the transcript of the conversation between the control tower and the pilots should be included in the investigation. Blood samples were taken to check for alcohol or drugs. Pilots’ phones were confiscated by the court.

Pegasus Airlines Flight 2193 crash

On February 5, 2020, strong winds and heavy rains had been reported throughout the day in Istanbul, Turkey. Two flights preceding PC2193 had to engage a go-around ‒ something that had been communicated by the air traffic controller to the two pilots.

However, the flight crew decided to proceed with the landing. Early data shows that the plane landed long and hot, about 1950 meters (6400 feet) past the runway 06 threshold at a speed of about 240 km/h. The aircraft was subject to a tailwind of 19 knots (35 km/h), with gusts going up to 29 knots (53km/h).

The Boeing 737-800 skidded over sixty meters on the runway before falling into an embankment, breaking into three parts. The cockpit and the first rows of passengers were severed from the rest of the fuselage and the tail broke off. All 183 occupants were evacuated. 179 people were injured and three passengers died in the hospital.

The Accident Investigation Board of the Ministry of Transport recovered the two flight data recorders, according to Pegasus Airlines general manager Mehmet Nane. “These types of incidents do not stem from a single cause but arise from a combination of factors,” said Nane, adding that “we pledge to implement any recommendations for enhancement and improvement that emerge during the crash investigation.”

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Clement Charpentreau
Editor-in-chief[br][br] Clement joined the AeroTime editorial team in 2018 after honing his journalism skills in newsrooms across France. Clement has a particular interest in the role of the aviation industry in international relations. He reports mainly on developments in defense and security technology, and aviation safety. Clement is based in Vilnius, Lithuania.
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