First rescuers reach AN-32 crash site in Arunachal, search on for survivors

First rescuers reach AN-32 crash site in Arunachal, search on for survivors
First rescuers reach AN-32 crash site in Arunachal, search on for survivors

The first rescuers have have reached the site of the crash of an AN-32 transport aircraft in Arunachal Pradesh’s West Siang district on Wednesday to look for survivors, the Indian Air Force said.

“Fifteen mountaineers have been inducted by Mi-17s and ALH (advanced light helicopter), with all equipments. Nine from IAF mountaineering team, four from Army and two civilian are mountaineers. Some have reached the crash site and some are still trekking,” the IAF said in a statement as it launched a major search and rescue operation for survivors after the wreckage of the aircraft which crashed on June 3 with 13 people on board was spotted on Tuesday.

The IAF also took to Twitter to say that additional resources have been mobilised to search for survivors of the Soviet-origin aircraft.

On Tuesday, the IAF said the wreckage was located at a height of 12,000 feet near a small village called Lipo. The flight which was bound for an advanced landing ground at Mechuka in Arunachal Pradesh went missing around 1 pm on June 3 after it took off from Jorhat in Assam.

Hostile terrain, bad weather and rains had earlier hampered search operations for the aircraft.

The first aerial image of the crash site shows debris from the aircraft and charred trees, indicating a big fire after the plane went down.