Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Downed navy chopper recovered in Zamboanga

Philippine soldiers recover Wednesday, August 18, 2010 the wreck of a navy Bolkow chopper that crashed off Zamboanga City. Security officials say three passengers were rescued, but the two chopper pilots are still missing. (Mindanao Examiner Photo – Jung Francisco)

ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / Aug. 18, 2010) – Philippine troops have on Wednesday resurfaced a navy chopper which crashed at sea off Zamboanga City in the southern island of Mindanao, officials said.

Officials said the Bolkow helicopter was recovered a day after it went down near the islands of Santa Cruz, several nautical miles southwest of Zamboanga, but there was no sign of the two pilots.

Three passengers were rescued from the chopper shortly after it crashed, said Lieutenant Hari Cunanan, a spokesman for the Philippine Navy in Mindanao. “The search is continuing,” he said.

He said the chopper crashed while taking photos and videos off the coast of Zamboanga as part of a routine exercise when the aircraft went down. There were suspicions that the chopper crashed due to engine trouble.

Navy divers and patrol boats were sent to the area near Santa Cruz Islands to help search for the pilots, he said.
(Jung Francisco and Ramon Deles)

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