A U.S. Army study said power failures, or brownouts, caused 50
percent of serious accidents involving the Apache attack helicopter on combat missions in Iraq.
The study said the brownouts took place during take-offs and landings in Iraq.
An army The AH-64 Apache Apache has been a leading helicopter among Middle East allies of the
United States. Egypt, Israel, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia have deployed the
Apache and Israel plans to purchase additional aircraft, Middle East Newsline reported.
Commissioned by a congressional committee, the army study said half of
the eight accidents termed catastrophic during the war in Iraq were caused
by brownouts. The other half stemmed from a failure of the auxiliary power
The report also reviewed the four less serious accidents of the Apaches.
Again, three of those accidents were attributed to brownouts.
Seven accidents were reported in the least serious accident category.
The report attributed three accidents to human error, three due to materiel
failure and one weapons-related.
The report said the army has launched an effort to prevent power
failures during the flight of the Apache. The measures included conducting
what the report termed "infrastructure improvements as well as revised
procedures and improved risk management in operations involving dust
landings or take-offs."
The army was also performing engineering adjustment to the auxiliary
power unit clutch failure. At the same time, the army has ordered
inspections to detect potential failures.