Coulson Group CEO Wayne Coulson has welcomed the Australian Transport Safety Bureau’s (ATSB) preliminary report into the C-130 incident over the Snowy Monaro region in New South Wales, Australia which took the lives of three team members earlier this year.

The ATSB publicly released the report today February 27, 2020 (Friday, February 28 in Australia). It provides a factual account of some of the circumstances surrounding the crash of the large air tanker which occurred on January 23, 2020.

Captain Ian McBeth, first officer Paul Hudson and flight engineer Rick DeMorgan Jr. perished while working as part of the firefighting effort during the 2019/2020 bushfire season.

Mr. Coulson said the preliminary report provided some understanding of the events leading up to the crash.  ATSB investigators are still piecing together what occurred.  

“We are continuing to work with the ATSB, and we are providing every assistance to them as part of the investigations. It’s important for us, for our team and for the families of those we’ve lost, to understand what happened that day,”

“We recognize that this preliminary report is just the start and further review of the information available will help form a better picture of what occurred, and what can be learned from this tragedy.”

“Australia and Australians are important to our company, and to the crew who operate here. This incident has been devastating to them, but the team members describe the importance of the “mission”, flying to support communities who are grateful and need their expertise in the sky.

“The support provided to us during this time has only made us more determined to build on over 20 years here and continue our strong partnerships with the emergency services in Australia.”

The families of the pilots who perished and Coulson team members have been briefed about the preliminary report and the process the ATSB will follow.

More information here.