An image of the Canadian flag.
The 5 lacking crew members of a Canadian navy helicopter that crashed throughout a NATO operation this week into the Mediterranean Sea are presumed lifeless, officers mentioned Friday.
The search and rescue mission undertaken on Wednesday has now formally been remodeled right into a restoration effort, the Canadian protection ministry mentioned in a press release.
To date, the physique of 1 crew member from the Cyclone Sikorsky CH-148 helicopter, Sub-Lieutenant Abbigail Cowbrough, has been recovered and recognized.
“The missing five members who were aboard the aircraft are now officially considered missing and presumed deceased,” the assertion mentioned.
“Additional remains have been discovered during the search, but cannot be identified at this time.”
The accident passed off Wednesday — the helicopter was headed again to the warship HMCS Fredericton after a coaching mission when contact was misplaced.
NATO ships and plane took half within the search and rescue mission, supported by Greece, Italy, Turkey and the US.
“NATO allies will be continuing recovery efforts at the scene as HMCS Fredericton departs for port in Italy,” the Canadian ministry mentioned, including that the warship would arrive in Italy on Saturday.
Canadian Protection Minister Harjit Sajjan mentioned the helicopter’s cockpit voice and flight information recorders had been recovered and can be analyzed in Canada.
The reason for the crash is to date “unknown,” he mentioned.
The Canadian frigate and submarine-hunting helicopter had been deployed since January 20 on NATO’s Operation Reassurance, aimed toward deterring Russia intervention in japanese and central Europe.