Air Platforms

Parrikar says most Indian helo crashes due to human error

05 March 2015

Human error was responsible for most of the 74 crashes of Indian military helicopters over the past 24 years, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar told India's parliament on 3 March.

"Sixty-three percent of these accidents have taken place due to human error by pilots and ground crew," he said.

"Standard operating procedures were being reviewed constantly and stringent training norms were being followed to minimise accidents," Parrikar added.

However, he admitted that the licence-built fleet of Chetak (Aerospatiale Alouette III) and Cheetah (Aerospatiale SA-315B) helicopters inducted from the mid-1960s onwards and operated by all three services were 'ageing'.

Efforts were afoot to progress their operational serviceability, he said, adding that Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), which develops, licence-builds, and maintains all Indian military helicopters, had been instructed to establish depots for helicopter spares in Kashmir and northeastern India, where a large number of these platforms are deployed.

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