More details have emerged as to the helicopter crash in California’s Mojave Desert that claimed the lives of seven people, including Nigerian banking mogul and CEO of Access Holdings Herbert Wigwe, his wife and son.
At a press briefing, officials from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) provided preliminary details about the accident.
Investigator Aaron Sours confirmed that all seven people on board died upon impact with witnesses admitting seeing the helicopter burst into flames as soon as it crash.
NTSB member Michael Graham said investigators who are examining weather and mechanical issues are gathering evidence at the crash site and interviewing witnesses.
He however cautioned that a full investigation will take 12 to 24 months with Officials working closely with aviation agencies in France, where the Airbus helicopter and Turbomeca engine were manufactured.
Graham said the helicopter was chartered from a company called Orbic Air. The pilot, co-pilot, Wigwe, his wife and son, and two other passengers were on their way to a destination when the aircraft went down amid rainy conditions.
Abimbola Ogunbanjo, former group chairman of Nigerian Exchange Group Plc (NGX Group), is also believed to be part of the passengers.
Wigwe was a prominent figure in Nigeria’s banking industry. His death alongside family members and associates has shocked the Nigerian business community.