AFP: 'No single factor' to blame for C-130 crash in Sulu


September 2, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The military said its investigating team found that a confluence of factors led to the crash of the C-130 aircraft in Patikul, Sulu that led to the deaths of 53 people, including 50 soldiers.

In a statement on Tuesday, the Armed Forces of the Philippines said "no single factor" led to the accident on July 4, according to the Philippine Air Force Aircraft Accident Investigation Board.

It said that the investigation team determined that the crash was due to "material, human and environmental factors."

"It was most probably due to actual or perceived material factors, and induced human factors which were aggravated by local and environment factors," the AFP added.

"The aircraft component, the environment condition and the aircrew response led to the unrecoverable stall in a critical phase of the aircraft operation," it also said.

The AFP has yet to release the full investigation report into the incident.

In the aftermath of the crash, lawmakers called for hearings into ensuring the safety of military aircraft. Sen. Ronald dela Rosa put the blame on "antiquated military aircraft" despite the C-130 that crashed being a new acquisition that was turned over to the Philippine Air Force in February.

"Perhaps, it is about time that we, in the legislature, take a second hard look at the reality that lives lost from these so called 'flying coffins' or 'widow makers' are priceless compared to the foreign debt that we may incur as a result of military modernization," he also said then.

The AFP on August 20 said it had identified all the 50 soldiers who died in the crash. It also said that remains of the personnel were already transported to their hometowns.

The C-130 transport plane was carrying soldiers and civilians when it overshot the runway, killing 50 military men and three civilians on the ground. There were also at least 46 who were injured.

The nearly 100 soldiers aboard the plane were from Bukidnon and Misamis Oriental who went through training in Cagayan de Oro and were meant to join the Jolo-headquartered 11th Infantry Division. — Kristine Joy Patag


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