A Sudanese military helicopter has crashed in Sudan’s Northern State, killing all four crew members, the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) confirmed in a statement on Tuesday.
According the SAF statement, the Mi-17 helicopter took off from the Northern State capital of Dongola on a mission to El Debba.
Capt. Abubaker Awad Hamza, the Co-pilot, Lt. Mohamed Mirghani, Assistant Air Technician Sharafeldin Mohamed Bashir and Sgt. Abdelhamid Khalil Salara, were all killed instantly.
The SAF attribute the crash to poor weather conditions.
First produced in 1981, the Russian-made Mi-17 medium transport helicopter is one of the most prolific utility helicopters ever built. It is the third most common operational military aircraft in the world, and has a reputation for being rugged and dependable. According to World Air Forces, the SAF operated 36 of Mi-17s in 2015.
It can be armed with window-mounted trainable machine guns, can carry 24 passengers and even small vehicles, has a 4,000 kg internal payload capacity. Alternatively it can carry underslung loads weighting up to 3,000 kg.