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Wednesday, 3 March 2011

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Kfir crash probe:

Final report in three weeks

The final report of the special investigation committee appointed to look into the Kfir crash will be forwarded within two or three weeks, Air Force Spokesman Group Captain Andrew Wijesuriya said.

Two Kfir aircraft among a fleet of aircraft taking part in a rehearsal for yesterday's Air Force's 60th anniversary events crashed near Udututtiripitiya in the Gampaha district Tuesday morning. Flight Lieutenant Monath Perera died of injuries sustained in the mid-air collision. Squadron Leader Vajira Jayakody who was injured is receiving treatment. Both Perera and Jayakody had been experienced flyers involved in scores of operations during the humanitarian mission.

A special investigation is being held by a five-member committee led by Air Chief Marshal Kapila Jayampathi.

The committee was appointed by Air Force Commander Air Vice Marshal Harsha Abeywickrama. The committee will inquire and find out the reason for the mishap while also assessing the damage. In addition to the huge loss caused by the destruction of two Kfir fighter jets, several houses were also damaged by the falling debris of the two aircraft.

The spokesman said that the Air Force is still unable to determine particular reason for the mishap but it would be revealed in due course. The committee will also probe the death of the pilot since it has been revealed that the life saving parachute failed to respond when the pilot ejected from the aircraft.

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