Two-seater T-34 training aircraft no. 3413 of the Air Force Academy experienced an engine failure last Sunday during a routine training flight, and was forced to make an emergency landing on the riverbed in the Kaoping River. Flight instructor Colonel Lai Wen-yu and the pilot, Second Lieutenant Chen Hou-chun, landed safely. The Air Force authorities immediately sent an investigative taskforce to handle the issue, and ordered all aircraft of the same model to be grounded.
The Air Force Academy said the single-engine aircraft took off from the academy’s runway in Greater Kaohsiung’s Gangshan District at 11:01am. The engine failure occured at 11:16am. They originally decided to land on another airbase in Pingtung County, but since it was too far, Lai decided to crash-land on an open sand field in Kaoping River. They finally landed 27km east of the Air Force Academy airport at 11:26am. After landing the aircraft layed flat on its belly on the riverbed.
The Air Force Academy said that 23-year-old Chen, who sat in the front seat, has accumulated 86 hours in-flight and belongs to the class of 2010. 45-year-old Lai has 2,853 hours in-flight and belongs to the class of 1988.
Last year two T-34 training aircraft crashed in the mountains of Namasia and Liukuei townships in Greater Kaohsiung, tragically causing four people to be killed in the line of duty. This most recent crash-landing of yet another T-34 training aircraft after experiencing engine failure leaves people once again questioning just how safe this model is.
(LIBERTY TIMES, TRANSLATED BY TAIJING WU)
1. investigative adj.
調查的 (diao4 cha2 de5)
例: Scientists appeared before a congressional investigative hearing yesterday to explain how to better curb the effects of climate change.
2. accumulate v.
累積 (lei3 ji1)
例: The students accumulated a lot of valuable experience during their study abroad trip to Spain last year.
3. tragically adv.
不幸地﹔悲慘地 (bu4 xing4 de5; bei1 can3 de5)
例: They tragically lost both of their children during the war.