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Plane engines removed from crash site, to be sent to the US for probe

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One of the plane’s engines being placed in a truck

The two engines from the ill-fated Piper Aztec aircraft have been removed from the crash-site and would be sent to the United States (US) as part of efforts to determine the cause of the incident, a senior official said Sunday.

Director General of the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), Zulfikar Mohammed said the engines’ manufacturer would examine them under the supervision of the US National Transportation Safety Board. “Everything else was burnt and destroyed,” he told Demerara Waves Online News (www.demwaves.com).

The aircraft was not fitted with a Black Box.

The American pilot, Pierre Angiel, and a Canadian surveyor perished when the plane landed on a wooden house at Sparendaam and exploded into a huge ball of fire.

Mohammed said the charred remains of the bodies were removed Saturday night and taken to the Lyken Funeral Parlour. Autopsies would be performed after relatives fly in and identify the bodies. The GCAA boss said accounts from eyewitnesses would also be collected to aid in the investigation.

The airplane, which belonged to the Miami, United States-based Miami-based Angiel EnviroSafe Inc, was here to conduct a survey of an area for the road leading to the proposed site for the Amaila Falls hydropower site.

Angiel’s son, Randy, has told Demerara Waves Online News (www.demwaves.com) that his father had expressed concern about flying very slowly over the forest canopy to capture the data for the LIDAR survey.

69-year old Florence Dyer-Tyndall narrowly escaped from the inferno after having heard at least two explosions that rocked the cottage. The aircraft had moments earlier collected six hours of fuel and was returning the Amaila Falls area when tragedy struck shortly before 3 PM.

The Government Information Agency (GINA) quoted eyewitnesses as saying that the the plane’s engines began misfiring. The engines then reportedly lost power and the pilot attempted to land in the Plaisance Community playfield but failed, hitting the top of a coconut tree before crashing into a house and exploding on impact.