THE PRESIDENT OF Peruvian carrier Faucett Airlines, which lost a Boeing 737-200 on approach to Lima Arequipa Airport, has denied engine failure and airborne-explosion reports, saying that investigators have determined that both engines were operating at impact.

The aircraft crashed about 2km (1nm) from the runway threshold during a night VOR/DME (distance-measuring-equipment) letdown to runway 09 on 29 February, killing six crew and 117 passengers.

Peru's civil-aviation authority says that visibility was given as 4km, with scattered low cloud, but just before impact at 20:25 local time the pilot had requested that runway lights be brightened as he could not see them when they should have been in sight. Air-traffic control reported that the lights were at full intensity. Runway 09 has precision-approach-path indicator lights and approach lighting.

The Romanian civil-aviation authority confirms that a state-owned Romatsa Antonov An-24 hit trees on the approach to Baia Mare, Romania and crashed, killing three crew and five non-revenue passengers on board and two people on the ground. The accident, which the authority says does not appear to have involved a technical malfunction, happened in blowing snow on 22 February about 15km from the runway.

A Moldavian-registered Air Tropical Antonov An-12 crashed on 27 February in the Lunda Norte region of Angola near the diamond-mining community of Lucapa, killing five crew and three passengers. Discussions have opened between the Government and forces controlled by the opposition UNITA party about the cause of the crash. On 18 December, 1995, a Trans Service Airlift Lockheed Electra crashed in the same region, killing 141 people.

Source: Flight International