Uploaded by Michael LK

MLA Air Accident

Surname 1
Student’s Name
Professor’s Name
The Charkhi Dadri Mid-Air Collision
An accident in the air is the worst nightmare that any pilot, crew, or passenger can
imagine. The causes of air accidents vary significantly and depend on specific problems and
circumstances that arise en route. However, head-on collision is the worst type of accidents, with
limited chances of survival. On November 12, 1996, two planes crashed over Charkhi Dadri area
close to Delhi in what is considered to be the fourth deadliest aviation disaster in the world
(Purohit and Suthar 3). The following paper will analyze the available facts about the case and
determine the causes that led to the tragedy.
The Charkhi Dadri mid-air collision involved two aircrafts:
Kazakhstan Airlines Ilyushin IL-76TD, registration UN-76435, charter service
Saudi Arabian Airlines Boeing 747-168B, registration HZ-AIH, Flight SVA763
(Purohit and Suthar 3).
The Charkhi Dadri area, where the planes collided in mid-air, is located about 40 miles west of
Delhi. All the 349 passengers involved in the crash – 27 in the Kazakhstan IL-76 aircraft and 312
in the Saudi Boeing – died on the sport (Purohit and Suthar 3). During the collision, the Saudi
Boeing 747 plane was headed to Dhahran, while the Kazakhstan airplane was en route to Delhi.
After departing from Delhi, the Delhi Approach instructed the pilot in the Saudi Boeing plane to
maintain an altitude of 14,000 feet. Similarly, the Kazakhstan plane was required to be at the
Surname 2
height of 15,000 feet (Shahid). However, one of the planes, Kazakhstan IL-76, failed to steak to
the required height and vertical separation as instructed by the Delhi Approach. Such failure of
pilots to comply with the ATC instructions places passengers and other aircrafts in danger.
At around 1840 hours (the Indian time), the Kazakhstan flight reported it had reached the
assigned altitude, even though it was moving at 14,500 feet and descending (Shahid). The
controller of the radar warned the pilot in the Kazakhstan IL-76 that the Saudi plane was
oncoming head-on, though did not provide a direct order of the action to be taken. The two
planes then vanished from the screen of the radar as they had crashed. The planes caught fire
instantly after colliding at the speed of 500 km/hour (Purohit and Suthar 3). Responders to the
accident found no casualties on the ground. The Charkhi Dadri mid-air collision is a terrifying
accident that undoubtedly affected the progress of the aviation industry.
The Charkhi Dadri mid-air collision was investigated by the Lahoti Commission headed
by Ramesh Chandra, a Delhi High Court judge (Ashraf). From the investigation, it was
determined that the air accident had been caused by the failure of the Kazakhstani IL-76 first
pilot, who had descended from the assigned altitude to 14,000 feet or lower (Ashraf). The crash
was also blamed on the lack of English language skills on the part of the Kazakhstani airlines
pilots. Following the head-on collision, which is the worst aviation accident ever to happen in
India, the country’s Civil Aviation Authority strengthened the safety measures. In particular, it
became mandatory for all the planes flying in and out of the country to be equipped with an
Airborne Collision Avoidance System (ACAS). The Charkhi Dadri mid-air collision highlights
the importance of emphasizing English language skills in the training and selection of pilots. A
proper understanding of the English language will prevent breakdowns in communication
between controllers and pilots and ensure the safety of passengers.
Surname 3
Overall, the Charkhi Dadri mid-air collision is among the worst aviation accidents in the
world. Since its occurrence, strict aviation regulations have been developed across the globe.
What is evident is that aviation accidents can be avoided or prevented through effective safety
techniques and careful planning. When the crew adhere to aviation regulations and maintain
proper communication with ATC, air accidents are less likely to occur.
Surname 4
Works Cited
Ashraf, Syed Firdaus. “Charkhi Dadri Collision Report Expected this Weekend.” Rediff, 3 Oct.
1999, web.archive.org/web/20140410180434/http://www.rediff.com/news/mar/11air.htm.
Accessed 21 March 2018.
Purohit, Jyoti, and Reed Suthar. "Disasters Statistics in Indian Scenario in the Last Two Decade."
International Journal of Scientific and Research Publications, vol. 2, no. 5, 2012, pp. 15.
Shahid, Arfa. “Key Events that Shaped our Social, Political and Cultural History.” Newsweek, 9
Nov. 2016, newsweekme.com/week-history-november-9-november-13/. Accessed 21
March 2018.