United States authorities say that witness reports suggest it was raining when a copter crashed in California near the Nevada border on Friday, killing the Group Chief Executive Officer of Access Holdings Plc, Herbert Wigwe, his wife, son; as well as a former Group Chairman of the Nigerian Exchange Group, Abimbola Ogunbanjo.
“Witness reports to the weather condition at the time of the accident suggest rain and a wintry mix,” said National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) member, Michael Graham, at a briefing on Sunday.
Two crew members also died in the crash, Graham said, adding that officials were at the scene to gather perishable evidence.
“The team methodically and systematically reviews all evidence and considers all potential factors to determine the probable cause of the crash,” he said.
“The crew consisted of a pilot in command and a safety pilot. The accident flight was operated by Orbic Air LLC as a Part 135 charter flight.”
According to Graham, there were no details on the passengers that boarded the aircraft. He said that “any names will be released through the coroner’s office,” without specifying a time frame.
The NTSB official said the Board would look into the chopper’s airworthiness; maintenance and structure of the helicopter, operations, meteorology, and air traffic control, according to Graham.
“Parties to the investigation include the FAA and Orbic Air LLC. As the investigation continues, other parties could be named.”