Kozhikode: The number of fatalities in the crash landing of AIR INDIA EXPRESS IX-1344, B-737 from Dubai to Calicut on 7 August, 2020 at Calicut has risen to 18.
An AIR INDIA EXPRESS LIMITED bulletin on Saturday afternoon (8 August) said the Commander of the ill-fated aircraft IX-1344 Capt. Deepak Vasant Sathe was an experienced Boeing 737-800 aircraft pilot and had earlier also flown the Airbus A-310. He had also won the sword of honour at the Air Force Academy in Hyderabad and was an accomplished fighter pilot before becoming a commercial pilot.
The family of the deceased Commander Capt. Deepak Vasant Sathe has been duly escorted by the Angels of Air India and the Emergency Response Team from Mumbai to Calicut. The family was escorted to the hospital where the mortal remains of the Captain were kept for post mortem.
As regards the family of the deceased co-pilot Capt. Akhilesh Kumar, they have already been escorted from Delhi to Calicut by Air India Express officials and Angels of Air India.
Earlier, two special relief flights had been arranged from Delhi and one from Mumbai for rendering humanitarian assistance to all the passengers and the family members.
The Emergency Response Director of AIR INDIA EXPRESS LIMITED was coordinating with all the agencies in Calicut, Mumbai as well as Delhi, Dubai for effective emergency response. The AAIB, DGCA & Flight Safety Departments had reached for investigating the accident.
The accident occurred, at 1940, local time. Immediately, search and rescue operations were carried out and all passengers many of whom were survivors had been sent to various hospitals. Emergency Command Center was immediately activated after the news of the accident. The Emergency Response Team members and GO Teams were sent to the accident scene, and they rendered necessary help to assist the emergency services and local authorities.
There were 184 passengers and 06 crew on board flight IX-1344. Unfortunately, the pilots passed away.
AIR INDIA EXPRESS LTD has established a passenger information centre, and a toll-free number has been made available for family or friends of those who may have been on board flight IX-1344. The toll-free number is 1800 2222 71. For those calling from outside. can call international country code.