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Cameroon to release long-awaited Kenya 737 crash findings

Cameroonian investigators are preparing to release the final report into the fatal loss of a Kenya Airways Boeing 737-800, nearly three years after the accident.

The Cameroon Civil Aviation Authority has yet to disclose publicly its conclusions from the crash, although it notes that its investigation has included assistance from specialists in Washington and Pensacola regarding the effects of spatial disorientation.

Flight KQ507 had been operating from Abidjan, in Ivory Coast, to Nairobi via Douala on 5 May 2007.

Shortly after take-off from Douala the twin-jet came down in a swamp and mangrove forest to the southeast of the city. There were no survivors among the 114 occupants.

US assistance has included use of simulation equipment in Seattle to reconstruct the flight. The CCAA also recruited the Canadian Transportation Safety Board to analyse the aircraft's flight recorders and enlisted support from authorities in Abidjan and Cotonou to examine the crew's movements and analyse the preceding flight sector.

Having been delayed by a storm, the 737 took off from Douala in darkness, just after midnight, but came down after climbing to around 3,000ft. Within a few weeks of the accident preliminary findings indicated no evidence of technical problems with the aircraft.

Kenya Airways states that the Kenyan Government has been sent a copy of the Cameroonian technical commission's conclusions into the accident.

"We expect the Government of Kenya will avail the report to Kenya Airways, following which we will be in a position to comment on the report, in the next few days," says chief executive Titus Naikuni. The CCAA states that it will release the report publicly.

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