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Crashed Apache black box retrieved
Central News Agency
2014-04-26 10:08 PM
Taipei, April 26 ( CNA) The black box of an Apache helicopter that crashed into a residential building in Taoyuan County has been retrieved to help determine the cause of the accident, the Army said Saturday, one day after the accident. The Army said the damaged helicopter was hoisted off the building with a crane and U.S. technicians and Taiwanese personnel cooperated to remove the black box in the hope that it will cast light on whether mechanical failure or human error contributed to the incident. The Army told CNA that an investigation team formed Friday afternoon and including the Boeing Company's representative to Taiwan will try to learn what caused the crash. The helicopter, one of 18 AH-64E Apache attack helicopters delivered to Taiwan from the United States just months earlier, was conducting flight training when it crashed into the top of a three-story building in Longtang Township at around 10 a.m., damaging four homes and slightly injuring the two pilots but without causing any serious injuries. The plane's pilot, Maj. Chen Lung-chien, and co-pilot, Lt. Col. Liu Ming-hui, received CT scans that showed them to be in good physical shape, although the Army started to provide psychological consultations for them that afternoon. The helicopter the duo were flying had its transmission replaced March 13 after arriving in Taiwan, due to concerns arising from a mechanical problem last year in the U.S. involving the same model of aircraft. It was flown north to the Longtan base from Tainan in southern Taiwan March 21 and put into use for flight training April 17. The Army has grounded its fleet of AH-64E Apache helicopters following the incident. Between November 2013 and March this year, Taiwan took delivery of 18 of the newest Apache models. They arrived in three shipments that form part of an order for 30, bought for NT$59.31 billion (US$2.01 billion) under a deal announced in 2008 by then-U.S. President George W. Bush. (By Tang Pei-chun and Lilian Wu)
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