SA pilot behind Botswana crash called friend from aircraft, looking for wife - report

2019-03-25 11:22
The damage following the plane crash. (Supplied)

The damage following the plane crash. (Supplied)

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A friend of pilot Charl Viljoen, who flew into a clubhouse on Saturday in Botswana, realised something was wrong when Viljoen called him from the aircraft asking about his wife's whereabouts, Netwerk24 reported on Monday.

An unnamed pilot told the publication that the friend had realised something was amiss and screamed for everyone to get out of the building.

Viljoen, who worked for Kalahari Air Services, was the only casualty in the crash.

News24 reported that the pilot is believed to not have had permission to fly the aircraft.

It is alleged that Viljoen, who EWN reported was South African, was involved in a domestic dispute with his wife, Natasha. He flew the plane into a facility at the Matsieng Aerodrome in Botswana.

In a video that went viral, the aircraft is seen flying very low before hitting a structure at the clubhouse, leaving nearby vehicles destroyed, with some in flames. Wreckage of both burnt vehicles and parts of the plane were seen scattered around the facility.

'Uninvited guest'

According to Matsieng Flying Club, the 2016 Beechcraft Kingair B200 aircraft A2-MBM was involved in a ground impact incident resulting in the death of the pilot and the destruction of infrastructure at the aerodrome.

The club in a statement said that Viljoen had been an "uninvited guest at a private function".

The couple had attended a stork party at the club and had ostensibly had an argument, and other guests had told a drunk Viljoen to leave, Netwerk24 reported.

He had left the club by car and headed to the Sir Seretse Khama International Airport, where Kalahari Air Services is based.

EWN reported that Viljoen started work at Kalahari Air Services in October last year. Netwerk24 said the couple had lived in Botswana for the past 10 years. 

Read more on:    botswana  |  air crashes

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