Two Pilots Killed in Han Kuang Exercise Accident|"戰搜"墜毀2飛官殉職 總統:全力協助家屬


President Tsai Ing-wen headed to Hsinchu Armed Forces Hospital on July 17 to pay her condolences to the family members of two pilots killed in a helicopter accident during the Han Kuang military exercise on July 16. She called the two pilots "heroes" because they had attempted to avoid crashing into civilian residences.


Two pilots died in a helicopter accident on July 16 during the Han Kuang military exercise. One day later, President Tsai Ing-wen headed to Hsinchu Armed Forces Hospital to pay her condolences to their family members. The two pilots had deliberately attempted to avoid crashing into civilian residences, which cost them their lives. The president therefore called them "heroes" and ordered the Ministry of National Defense to provide assistance to their families. She also urged all of Taiwan to give the military their utmost support.

This is a huge loss for our military, and we also feel great sorrow. The pilots chose to change direction, giving up their chance to save themselves. They are our heroes.

The bodies of the two pilots were transferred to Taoyuan Armed Forces General Hospital. Friends of pilot Colonel Chien Jen-chuan described him as a "great father," and said he often shared photos of himself with his son and daughter on Facebook. Netizens also expressed their condolences via the social media site. Co-pilot Kao Chia-lung was a devout Catholic, and was preparing to marry his girlfriend this year. The helicopter involved in the accident was a Bell OH-58D Kiowa.

There have been three hard landing incidents involving this type of helicopter in the past two years. Experts say no one was injured in the first two accidents, and it appeared those causes were human error. This time, the helicopter caught on fire after it crashed. Prior to the crash, Chien had reported that the rotor speed was too low, so there is a possibility the crash was caused by a malfunction.

We can see from the videos that there was probably a loss of control, judging by the degree to which the helicopter ignited, which resulted from the oil tank rupturing upon impact. Perhaps Taiwan's topographical features will be taken into account in future safety checks of Kiowa helicopters to strengthen their mechanical designs.

Experts add Bell OH-58D Kiowa helicopters are paired with Bell AH-1 Cobra helicopters during missions, and can be used for non-military purposes such as aerial surveys of natural disasters. The Army has formed an investigatory task force to determine the cause of the accident.



戰搜直升機墜毀,兩名飛官殉職,總統蔡英文17號到國軍新竹醫院慰問家屬,對於殉職飛官在事發當下選擇選向,避開民宅造成傷亡,蔡英文表示這兩位都是英雄,並且指示國防部給予全力協助,期盼全體國人,能夠給辛勞保家衛國的國軍最大的支持。

總統 蔡英文表示:「這是我們國軍一個非常大的損失,也讓我們感到非常的哀痛與不捨。(飛官)選擇了轉向,他們錯失了,他們自己的一個搶救自己生命的機會,他們是我們的英雄。」

國軍也列隊為罹難的正副駕駛移靈到國軍桃園總醫院,殉職的正駕駛簡任專上校,是朋友眼中的好爸爸,臉書上常分享與兒子女兒的合照,家庭生活和樂,網友也紛紛前往臉書哀悼,副駕駛高嘉隆則是一名虔誠的天主教徒,原定今年要跟女友結婚,卻發生意外。

這也是陸軍同款OH-58D直升機在2年內發生的第3起重落地事故。不過專家分析,前兩次意外沒有人員傷亡,看起來應該是人為操作不當,而這次重摔,起火燃燒,加上正駕駛曾回報主旋翼轉速過慢,研判是機械故障因素較大。

國防資源與產業研究所所長 蘇紫雲表示:「影片看到它那種爆燃的程度,應該是失去控制,才會把油箱撞破的這種情況。也許未來我們,在對歐機的總安檢之後,就是重新考量台灣的地形的特性,強化歐機上面的一些,機械設計可能的部分。」

蘇紫雲表示OH-58D直升機是搭配眼鏡蛇攻擊直升機一同執行任務,不只能做於軍事用途,也能現場空拍勘災,目前陸軍已組成專案小組進行調查,要全力釐清失事原因。

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