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Search area expanded for plane missing over Guyana’s jungle

Last Updated on Wednesday, 31 December 2014, 0:16 by GxMedia

Captain Nicky Persaud

With still no sign of the missing Britten Norman Islander aircraft, the search and rescue operation widened its areas close to the intended destination Karisparu – an Amerindian community in Region 8 (Potaro/Siparuni) today, December 30, the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) said Tuesday.

Eyewitness reports indicate that the aircraft was spotted closer to Karisparu, which prompted the decision to concentrate in areas including Winiperu, Taffy, Black Water and Konawaruk River, which falls within the already identified area of interest.

The new area of concentration is 60 square miles and approximately 10 miles from Mahdia based on reported sightings which are being investigated. Unfortunately, at 17:20 hrs, operations were suspended due to inclement weather and the impending sunset.

The teams were also equipped with an Emergency Locator Transmitter Locator (ELTL) – a tracking device which aids in the detection and location of aircraft. 

On the ground, Tesouro Resources, a mining company, through its Finance Manager Ray Beharry, joined in the search.  

Two fixed wing aircraft and three rotor wing aircraft including one GDF helicopter continued the search today. Phoenix aircraft also provided assistance in the aerial search.

GCAA Investigators and GDF Special Forces remain on standby in Mahdia for deployment.

Flying time logged for the third day of the aerial reconnaissance is 11 hours and 52 minutes. The total search hours flown to date is 29 hours and 54 minutes. 

On Sunday, December 28, the Britten Norman Islander aircraft 8R-GHE disappeared enroute to Karisparu. Captain Nicky Persaud, 27 and loader David Bisnauth, 51 were the two crew members on onboard.

The search continues tomorrow, December 31.