Bad weather and a difficult approach came together, it appears, to cause yet another instance of Controlled Flight Into Terrain (CFIT), taking the lives of 66 passengers and crew in Iran.
The Iran Aseman flight, EP-3704, took off from Tehran heading to Yasuj with 60 passengers and 6 crew on board. It disappeared from radar near Zagroz Mountains, and its wreckage was found later near the Irani village of Semirom, at an elevation between 12,500 and 13,500 feet. The aircraft’s last reported altitude, according to data from Flightradar24, was 16,975 feet.
So extreme are the weather conditions that the fog has made it impossible to land helicopters at the crash site and rescuers are on their way by foot. There is, of course, little hope of finding any survivors.
The ill fated aircraft was EP-ATS, built in 1993. It had recently been restored to service after seven years in the hangar, presumably due to lack of spares arising from the sanctions on Iran. The aerodrome in question, Yasuj, is surrounded by high mountains. The AIP Iran have not published a standard arrival route, providing instead just Instrument Approach Procedures 1 and 2, along with the aerodrome chart.
The loss of this aircraft is the second fatal accident of 2018 – and its just February. 2017 was recently hailed as the safest air for civil aviation, with zero fatalities.
Images: JetPhotos, IAP Iran and AVHerald