Pilot in Kobe Bryant helicopter crash violated rules, NTSB say

Los Angeles, Feb 9 (efe-epa).- Kobe Bryant, his daughter and seven other passengers were killed in a helicopter accident caused after the pilot became disoriented while flying in cloudy conditions, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) ruled on Tuesday.

Federal regulators said that pilot Ara Zobayan suffered spatial disorientation while he navigated through clouds and foggy-covered terrain during a flight from Orange County to Camarillo (California) on 26 January 2020.

Robert Sumwalt, chairman of the NTSB, said Zobayan violated federal standards by flying through the clouds.

Zobayan likely misperceived altitude and acceleration, and suffered a somatogravic illusion, according to Dr. Dujuan Sevillian. He added that the acceleration of the helicopter could cause a pilot to sense the aircraft was climbing when it wasn’t.

The pilot had neither drugs nor alcohol in his system at the time of the crash, authorities said. The crash has generated several lawsuits and countersuits. EFE-EPA


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