Three British persons and a South African have been killed after a small plane crashed near Dubai Airport.
The UK-registered light aircraft came down after a reported technical malfunction, officials in Dubai claim. Among the dead are the pilot and his assistant, according to the Dubai Informer.
The Government of Dubai Media Office said, “An accident involving a small plane with 4 passengers occurred resulting in the death of the pilot and his assistant and two officials. The relevant teams are on the scene.”
The Media Office also said, “All operations at the Dubai airport are running smoothly after a slight delay and diversion of some flights as a precautionary measure to ensure security following a minor incident involving a small plane.”
Authorities gave no explanation for what caused the crash of the aircraft, a Diamond DA62 with a tail number belonging to Flight Calibrations Service Ltd. of Shoreham, England.
The airport said it halted flights from 7:36 p.m. until 8:22 p.m. local time over the crash.
Flight Calibrations Service announced in November it signed a contract at Dubai International Airport to do work on its “navaids,” beacons surrounding an airport that help pilots know where runways are and how to land. Dubai International Airport later told The Associated Press in a statement that the plane “was being used to calibrate the approach systems” at the airport.
An employee at Flight Calibrations Services, which has two Diamond DA62s stationed in the United Arab Emirates, declined to comment Thursday night.
The work comes as Dubai has shut down its southern runway to resurface it and replace all its lighting and supporting infrastructure. It closed on April 16 and officials hope to reopen it on May 30.
Later, the GCAA said, “The four-seat plane crashed while on a mission to calibrate terrestrial navigation systems at the airport, with all crew members, three British, and a South African, killed.
An investigation team from the GCAA arrived at the scene of the crash.
The GCAA said air traffic at the airport is back to normal, adding that it will continue the investigation and provide updates on the progress.
Via The Telegraph / Gulf News / Aero News / AP