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Two pilots killed as trainee aircraft crashes amid dense fog in Madhya Pradesh

BHOPAL: Two pilots, including a young trainee pilot and a middle-aged flight instructor were killed when the trainee aircraft they were flying crashed amid dense fog in Sagar district of Madhya Pradesh on Friday night.

The mishap happened at around 9.30 pm, when the single engine trainee aircraft of the Chimes Aviation Academy (CAA) crashed in an agricultural field – around 200-300 meters from the Dhana Airport in Sagar district, district SP Amit Sanghi told The New Indian Express.

According to primary investigation, the single engine trainee aircraft of CAA was being flown by the trainee pilot Piyush Chandel (30) along with flight instructor Ashok Makwana (58) as part of night flying training, when sudden fog in the area caused the visibility to drop to just 1-2 ft.

With fog growing dense, the duo tried to return and land the aircraft on the Airport, but owing to poor visibility (just up to 1-2 ft) they misjudged the location of the airport/runway and the aircraft crashed in an open agricultural field – around 200-300 meters from Dhana Airport, Sanghi added.

The duo was rushed to a private hospital in Sagar town, where the doctors declared them as dead on arrival. While Chandel hailed from Mumbai, Makwana originally belonged to Gujarat.  Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath tweeted on Friday late night, condoling death of the two pilots in the trainee aircraft crash.

The Dhana Airport, which is located in Sagar district of MP’s Bundelkhand region, is the home base of the Chimes Aviation Academy . Other than the CAA, the airfield is often used by MP Government Aviation, VIP charter aircrafts as well as medical evacuation aircrafts. The night operations are limited to local training flights of CAA. The airport is also used by the Army which too has a strong base in Sagar.