Wed, Sep 30, 2015 - Page 3 News List

Air force pilots died in frontal impact crash: prosecutors

Staff writer, with CNA

Two air force pilots whose AT-3 training aircraft crashed in mountains in central Taiwan last week died from a frontal impact crash at high speed, the Kaohsiung District Prosecutors’ Office said on Monday.

The office said a coroner’s report released on Monday afternoon showed that the bodies of 32-year-old Major Wang Ching-chun (王勁鈞) and 23-year-old First Lieutenant Huang Chun-jung (黃俊榮), who were piloting the plane, did not exhibit any toxic or drug reactions during the incident, the report said.

In addition, no carbon particles were found in their trachea, indicating that they died instantly upon impact rather than from smoke inhalation, the report said.

The coroners said the two pilots died immediately from the frontal impact of their aircraft crashing nose-first into a mountain.

The AT-3 took off from an air force base in Kaohsiung at 11:55am on Sept. 22 and lost contact with air traffic controllers 30 minutes later, the air force said.

The plane, which had been in service for about 27 years, disappeared from radar screens in the skies over Nantou County, it said.

Wang was in the front seat of the plane and Huang was in the back during the routine training flight. Both of them were found dead in the cabin on Saturday, the air force said.

Wang, who had clocked 1,489 flight hours, was a flight instructor at Kaohsiung’s Air Force Academy, while Huang had 116 hours of flying experience.

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