Archive for ‘Indian Air Force (IAF)’

13/06/2019

No survivors, says IAF after first recce team reaches crashed An-32 aircraft

Air force and army helicopters on Wednesday had airdropped 15 mountaineers for rescue operations last evening. The IAF said eight reached the An-32 crash site on Thursday morning.

INDIA Updated: Jun 13, 2019 14:35 IST

HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
IAF,An-32 aircraft,An-32 crash
Air force and army helicopters on Wednesday had airdropped 15 mountaineers for rescue operations last evening.(ANI )

Thirteen military personnel on board the An-32 aircraft that crashed in Arunachal Pradesh on June 3 have died, the Indian Air Force said on Thursday hours after the first recce team reached the crash site. Air force and army helicopters on Wednesday had airdropped 15 mountaineers for rescue operations. Eight of them reached the crash site and transmitted the tragic news.

“IAF is sad to inform that there are no survivors from the crash of An32,” the air force said in a string of tweets to “pay tribute to the brave air-warriors who lost their life” in the crash.

The IAF also identified the air warriors who died in the crash: Wing Commander GM Charles, Squadron Leader H Vinod, Flight Lieutenants R Thapa, Ashish Tanwar, S Mohanty and Mohit K Garg, Warrant Officer KK Mishra, Sergeant Anoop Kumar, Corporal Sherin, Leading Air Craftsman SK Singh and Pankaj and two non combatant enrolled employees Putali and Rajesh Kumar.

Also Read | AN-32 pilot’s wife was on ATC duty in Jorhat when the aircraft went off the radar

The An-32 was on its way to an advanced landing ground at Mechuka in Arunachal Pradesh’s West Siang district – about 15 km from the Line of Actual Control, the disputed border with China – when it lost contact with ground control in about 30 minutes after taking off from Jorhat in Assam.

The aircraft was equipped with an emergency locator transmitter, an emergency beacon in the cargo section that can broadcast distress signals to reveal the location of an aircraft. But no signal came from this device.

The The 24-metre-long aircraft with a wingspan of about 29 metres was a speck in a treacherous search zone spanning hundreds of square kilometers dotted with towering ridges, thick forests and deep valleys, officials familiar with the search said. The search efforts were hampered by bad weather, with fierce rains and poor visibility narrowing the scope of operations.

For eight days, the IAF deployed every possible asset it could – right from satellites in space, specialised surveillance aircraft from the Navy, unmanned aerial vehicles, and Global 5000 surveillance jet of the country’s external spy agency to locate the Soviet-origin transport plane that mysteriously disappeared from its radar screens. It also announced a Rs 5 lakh reward for information that could help it locate the aircraft.

The first firm clue about the crash site came eight days later from a villager in Arunachal Pradesh’s remote mountains, according to state government officials in the West Siang district.

Also Read | From ‘missing’ to ‘crash’: The family of IAF cook swings between hope and despair

A Mi-17 helicopter, among the scores of aircraft involved in the massive search, finally sighted the wreckage at 12,000 feet near a tiny village called Lipo with a population of just around 120 people. The first image of the crash site indicated the plane had blown up into a ball of fire on impact and dimmed hopes about the possibility of the IAF personnel surviving the crash.

The crash is similar to an incident from 10 years ago in which the wreckage of an AN-32 that crashed in West Siang with the same number of people on board was found at 12,000 feet. There were no survivors in the June 2009 crash. The IAF has lost 10 aircraft this year.

In 2016, another AN-32 – flying from Chennai to the Andaman and Nicobar Islands – went missing above the Bay of Bengal with 29 people on board. Search teams were not able to locate the aircraft despite a massive operation.

Source: Hindustan Times

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03/06/2019

Indian Air Force’s AN-32 aircraft with 13 onboard goes missing

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An AN-32 aircraft of the Indian Air Force with 13 people onboard has gone missing after taking off from Jorhat in Assam.

The aircraft was headed to Mechuka Advance Landing Ground, the landing strip in the eastern Himalayas of Arunachal Pradesh’s West Siang district. The landing strip is about 30-odd km from the nearest point on the India-China border.

The transport aircraft took off from Jorhat at 12.25 pm.

It was in contact with ground agencies for the next 35 minutes. An Indian Air Force official said there had been no contact after 1 pm.

A total of eight crew and five passengers are onboard the aircraft.

News agency ANI said Sukhoi-30 combat aircraft and C-130 Special Ops aircraft had also been deployed on a search mission to locate the IAF aircraft.

Monday’s missing aircraft revived memories of the AN-32 that went missing while flying from Chennai to Port Blair in July 2016.
A massive search mission had been launched to find the 29 people on the transport plane. The IAF had then carried out 200 search sorties to cover over 2 lakh square nautical miles multiple times by these aircraft. The IAF court of inquiry later concluded that it was unlikely that the missing personnel on board the aircraft survived the accident.