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Montevideo, March 5th 2021 - 14:02 UTC

 

 

Search for missing Chilean aircraft becomes international matter

Wednesday, December 11th 2019 - 18:32 UTC
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Uruguayan Air Force Colonel Leonardo Blengini agreed: [it] “is a very complicated area to say that the plane is afloat,” even if it managed to ditch. Uruguayan Air Force Colonel Leonardo Blengini agreed: [it] “is a very complicated area to say that the plane is afloat,” even if it managed to ditch.
The search area, according to FACh's latest release The search area, according to FACh's latest release
The RAF A400M Atlas aircraft based at Mount Pleasant Complex has deployed to Punta Arenas, Chile, to assist with the international search efforts for the missing Chilean C130 aircraft. (Pic BFSAI)
The RAF A400M Atlas aircraft based at Mount Pleasant Complex has deployed to Punta Arenas, Chile, to assist with the international search efforts for the missing Chilean C130 aircraft. (Pic BFSAI)

No progress has been reported by Wednesday afternoon in the search for the missing Chilean Air Force (FACh) Lockheed C-130 Hercules transport aircraft with which all radio contact was lost at 6.13 p.m. Monday.

The search, which will initially last six days, became an international operation involving forces from Argentina, Brazil the United Kingdom and Uruguay. These countries have deployed units in the area while the United States, Peru and Israel supply satellite data.

The US built airplane was carrying 38 people on board, 17 crew members and 21 passengers from the Chabunco Air Base in the city of Punta Arenas to the President Eduardo Frei Montalva Air Base in Antarctica.

The Hercules had departed at 4.55 p.m. local time and was lost track of in the Drake Channel relatively not far from its airport of destination.

“We still don't have any news but we are making every effort possible to find the plane,” said Karla Rubilar, a spokeswoman for the Chilean government, in a radio interview.

The Falkland Islands Government (FIG) are working in support of British Forces South Atlantic (BFSAI) in the search. The UK Ministry of Defence will be deploying a liaison team from Mount Pleasant, to Punta Arenas, which includes a FIG employee who will join the BFSAI Operations team as an interpreter, it was reported.

The South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands Government (SGSSI) are also supporting the search effort.

President Sebastián Piñera vowed to do everything in his power to rescue the missing Hercules but warned conditions in the area were tough.

Uruguayan Air Force Colonel Leonardo Blengini agreed: [it] “is a very complicated area to say that the plane is afloat,” even if it managed to ditch.

Former UK Ambassador to Chile Fiona Clouder posted on Twitter: “Thoughts with the families of those missing @FACh_Chile and all those involved with the search #Antarctica.”

 

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