NEWS

Seaplane Salvage Continues Today

The Turtle Airways Beaver (DHC-2) seaplane that sank in the waters off Nadi is in the process of being salvaged. This is after a group of personnel from the Civil
27 Dec 2017 12:46
Seaplane Salvage Continues Today
A barge berthed at the Turtle Airways berthing dock at Wailoaloa in Nadi on December 26, 2017. Photo: Waisea Nasokia

The Turtle Airways Beaver (DHC-2) seaplane that sank in the waters off Nadi is in the process of being salvaged.

This is after a group of personnel from the Civil Aviation Authority of Fiji, Airports Fiji Limited and Police were present at the site yesterday. A barge was also seen on site.

Turtle Airways managing director Richard Evanson Jr said: “We were not able to salvage the aircraft on Monday because it was Christmas.

“We got a barge and crane today (yesterday). We have attempted to salvage the aircraft but unfortunately it will take longer, so we may be able to do it by tomorrow (today).”

The Turtle Airways Beaver (DHC-2) seaplane sank after it encountered problems during take-off at Wailoaloa in Nadi on Sunday.

Six passengers, who were on board at the time of the accident, were safely rescued and given the necessary attention by Turtle Airways management and staff.

Mr Evanson Jr said: “Given this issue is directly related to that – and the fuel is located on the belly of the aircraft, which is not related to the flotation device, there is little chance of a fuel leak, given the remainder of the aircraft is fine.

“We are also taking every care to ensure the safe salvaging of the aircraft – and this process must not be rushed.”

He said the aircraft was fully intact after the aborted take-off, and the passengers had approximately 15 minutes to disembark the aircraft before any part of it became submerged.

“This gave them enough time to wear their life jackets, and inflate it after exiting the plane.”

The Civil Aviation Authority of Fiji has referred all matters of the seaplane to the Department of Civil Aviation.

Chief executive officer Netava Waqa said: “The CAAF has referred the accident to the Fijian Government Department of Civil Aviation, which is the appropriate authority in Fiji to investigate air transport accidents.”

Edited by Ranoba Baoa

Feedback: waisean@fijisun.com.fj

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