|Predator Accident Report Released |
Predator Accident Report Released
Langley Air Force Base, Virginia -- April 13, 2001 (ACCNS) -- An RQ-1K Predator unmanned aerial vehicle crashed Oct. 23 in Kosovo as a result of mechanical failure, according to accident investigators.
The Predator is an unmanned reconnaissance aircraft used to survey battlefields and return video footage and radar data. The accident happened about 180 miles southeast of Tuzla Air Base, Bosnia, where the aircraft was based. The Predator was part of an Operation Joint Forge reconnaissance mission over Kosovo and was assigned to the 11th Reconnaissance Squadron, Nellis Air Force Base, Nev.
According to Air Combat Command's Accident Investigation Board report released Thursday, the accident resulted from mechanical failure in the UAV's propeller control system.
Investigators found substantial evidence indicating errors during maintenance on the propeller control system on Sept. 28 played a critical role in the accident. Evidence showed that certain components of the propeller assembly were not adequately lubricated; in addition, a key bolt was stripped and had not been tightened properly. These errors likely led to the accident, according to the lead investigator.