Pilot Reported Dead In Bangkok Airways Crash




Pilot Reported Dead In Bangkok Airways Crash

By Bill Goldston



August 7, 2009, on Tuesday afternoon at about 2 PM, Bangkok time,  Bangkok Airways, Flight PG 266 carrying 68 passengers, two pilots and two flight attendants encountered severe turbulence on its final approach to Samui Airport located on the resort island in Surat Thani, Bangkok, Thailand.  

The ATR 72 twin turboprop aircraft, with the tail number MSN670 skidded off the runway and collided with an older, non used control tower on the field killing the pilot and injuring 6 passengers. Passengers were quickly evacuated from the plane. Four passengers were seriously injured and taken to Bangkok Samui Hospital. Two others with minor injuries received medical care at Thai Inter Hospital. The remaining 62 passengers were taken to a hotel. The two flight attendants and copilot were reportedly safe.


At 5 PM, the President of Bangkok Airways, Captain Puttipong Prasarttong-Osoth, held a press conference to provide additional information on the accident that occurred with Flight PG 266. The Captain of Flight PG 266 was Chartchai Pansuwan, an experienced pilot with 14 years in-type of aircraft and had worked for the company for 19 years. The passengers were foreign vacationers from Germany, Italy, Israel, Spain, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

The Department of Aviation has dispatched an investigation team to the accident site. Bangkok Airways reported the airline’s insurance company - Bangkok Insurance, will cover full liability caused by this accident.

Bangkok Airways is a regional airline based in Bangkok, Thailand. It operates scheduled services to 20 destinations in Thailand, Cambodia, China, Japan, Laos, Maldives, Burma, Singapore and Vietnam. Its main base is Suvarnabhumi Airport, Bangkok.

The airline was established in 1968 as Sahakol Air operating air-taxi services under contract from OICC, an American construction company, USOM and a number of other organizations engaged in oil and natural-gas exploration in the Gulf of Thailand. It began scheduled services in 1986, becoming Thailand's first privately-owned domestic airline. It re-branded to become Bangkok Airways in 1989.

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