Wednesday, 29 March, 2023

Bodies found in plane wreck on Philippines volcano

Bodies found in plane wreck on Philippines volcano

Rescuers have found the bodies of all four people on board a small plane which crashed into an active Philippines volcano last week.

Authorities on Thursday confirmed the deaths of the two Filipino pilots and two Australian passengers.

Search teams had scoured the slopes of the Mayan volcano since Sunday, when the aircraft wreckage was spotted about 300m (985ft) from the crater.

Teams now faced the challenge of safely retrieving the bodies, officials said.

Local Filipino authorities say they will investigate the cause of the plane's crash.

The Cessna 340 aircraft went missing on Saturday shortly after departing for Manila from a local airport several kilometres from Mayon.

The Australian government confirmed the deaths of its two citizens on Thursday. Simon Chipperfield and Karthi Santhanam had worked as consultants for Filipino power company Energy Corp.

The company also identified the pilots- Rufino James Crisostomo Jr. and Joel Martin.

Australia's foreign minister extended her condolences to the families of the crash victims.

"The families of those who we have lost will be grieving and I express not only our sympathy and condolences, but to say to them, our hearts go out to them in this time of great grief," Penny Wong said.