The Irish Air Accident Investigation Unit (AAIU) has released an update on the continued search for the wreckage of the Irish Coast Guard helicopter R116, saying that the aircraft’s wreckage has been located.
Eight days after the Sirkorsky S-92 went missing, a remote operated vehicle (ROV) operation was able to locate the wreckage 60 m (200 ft) off Blackrock Island, which is lying on the seabed at a depth of approximately 40 m, said AAIU.
It has not yet been confirmed whether the bodies of the missing crew members, Captain Mark Duffy, winch operator Paul Ormsby and winchman Ciaran Smith are with the wreckage. The AAIU said it now has to wait for a weather window before exploring the wreckage further, or trying to recover it.
The cause of the crash is still yet to be confirmed. The Dublin-based helicopter was last heard from when heading to Blacksod to refuel on 14 March. Pilot Dara Fitzpatrick was recovered from the crash site, but died in hospital due to the severity of her injuries.