23 Nov 2020

Human error cause of New Caledonia plane crash

4:50 am on 23 November 2020

French air accident investigators have identified human error as the cause of last January's plane crash in Lifou in New Caledonia, in which four people died.

The four-seater single-engine Mooney M20F plane crashed next to a house in the settlement of Hnathalo shortly after taking off at night.

Ouanaham airport on Lifou, New Caledonia

Ouanaham airport on Lifou, New Caledonia Photo: Google maps

The plane was owned and piloted by the head of Lifou's air control staff, who investigators said lacked experience in flying at night and had slight problems with his eyesight.

The victims had also been drinking.

Since the accident, flying into Lifou at night without instruments is not allowed.