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Offshore Helicopter Involved In Incident: Coast Guard

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Here is more some sad news.


Hope fades in N.L. chopper search



The search for 16 missing passengers of a helicopter crash off the coast of Newfoundland will end Friday evening, because officials say "the likelihood of finding survivors is no longer there."


13/03/2009 3:53:47 PM




A helicopter travelling from St. John's to the Hibernia offshore oil platform and operated by Cougar Helicopters ditched after experiencing technical problems, Thursday, March 12, 2009. The search continues Friday, March 13, 2009.

CTV.ca News Staff


The announcement comes more than 30 hours after a chopper heading to an oil platform crashed into frigid waters with 18 people on board.


One survivor was rescued from the water on Thursday and is being treated in hospital for his injuries. One death has been confirmed but 16 others are now presumed dead.


"It appears there are no survivors," said the Joint Rescue Co-ordination Centre's Maj. Denis McGuire, adding that rescue crews had repeatedly searched a massive area of open water with no sign of life.


The search will officially end at 7:30 p.m. local time.


The operation will now be handed over to the Transportation Safety Board and the RCMP, who will conduct a missing persons investigation.


The chopper crashed and sank in 120 metres of water, and left a debris trail of about six kilometres.


Crash details


The helicopter was en route from St. John's to the Hibernia platform when the pilot reported mechanical troubles and turned back towards St. John's.


The chopper issued a distress call, and eight minutes later, went into the water.


"Mechanical problems were reported and we don't know of what nature," said Julie Leroux, spokesperson for the Transportation Safety Board.


It is believed that the pilot was "ditching" the aircraft, that is, making an attempt to intentionally crash-land the helicopter due to the mechanical problem.


The crew of a Provincial Airlines plane flew over the area within a few minutes of the crash and reported that the helicopter was floating upside down. The helicopter sunk shortly afterwards.


The missing aircraft is operated by Cougar Helicopters in St. John's.


With files from The Canadian Press


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Search to end.

"Grim-faced officials said late Friday afternoon they will halt a search for 16 people who are still missing in the wake of a helicopter crash east of Newfoundland."


A very sad day...all the best to the relatives and all involved.





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