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On 1 March 2003, the Government of Timor Leste released its Preliminary Report into the fatal aircraft accident near Baucau on 31 January 2003.

At the request of the Government of Timor Leste, the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) has today posted this preliminary report on its web site.

The Ilyushin IL-76TD aircraft impacted the ground near Cakung Airport, Baucau, during a landing approach. All six crew on board were fatally injured in the crash.

ATSB Deputy Director, Air Safety, Alan Stray said the investigation was continuing.

At the request of the Government of Timor Leste, the ATSB appointed an Accredited Representative to the investigation, who is assisted by investigators from the ATSB, the Directorate of Flying Safety Australian Defence Force and the Defence Science and Technology Organisation, he said.

The investigators are working to identify what factors led to this accident and loss of life and what can be done to prevent it from happening again.

During the preliminary phase of the investigation, we have identified several recommendations for safety actions the Government of Timor-Leste and the United Nations could take to improve flight safety.

The recommendations to the Government of Timor Leste include:

  • The development of instrument approach and aerodrome charts for Baucau, Timor Leste;
  • That the government review the provision of air traffic services and facilities to aircraft operations into Baucau.

We have also recommended that United Nations Air Operations assist the Government of Timor Leste to develop and promulgate approved instrument approach and aerodrome charts for Baucau, Mr Stray said.

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Last update 01 April 2011