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Weather hampers probe

Serafina Silaitoga
Wednesday, March 07, 2018

ADVERSE weather prevented the Cessna 172 investigating team from reaching the crash site at Delaikoro.

New Zealand investigator Andrew McGregor and his team could not reach the site because of heavy rain, a statement from the Department of Information stated yesterday.

"The team of investigators, who are being assisted by the army, police force, fire services and Dogoru villagers, are finding it difficult to proceed to the site to recover the wreckage as heavy rain persists," Mr McGregor said.

"We are being assisted not only by the army, police and fire service but also the Doguru villagers.

"Depending on the location of the wreckage, it will be recovered by a combination of human manpower and helicopter airlifting."

Mr McGregor said despite many attempts, the unfavourable weather was not helping at all.

"Despite our many attempts, the weather has not been good and is hampering the search of the wreckage," he said.

"Also, the terrain is very steep and mountainous and accessibility is not straightforward.

"The cause of the crash will only be determined once the wreck has been retrieved and their full investigations are complete."

Pacific Flying School trainee pilot Merelesita Lutu and instructor Iliesa Tawalo died at the site after their aircraft crashed last Monday afternoon.

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