Crashed Cessna still under water in Ilocos Sur

Bryan Realgo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 26 2016 06:24 PM

Local authorities attempt to retrieve a plane which crashed in waters off Barangay Sabangan, Santiago, Ilocos Sur. Bryan Realgo, ABS-CBN News

ILOCOS SUR – The training plane which crashed in waters off Barangay Sabangan, Santiago Friday last week has yet to be recovered, local authorities said.

The Cessna C172 plane with tail number RP-C7838 is around 20 feet underwater. 

The bodies of flight instructor John Kaizan Estabillo and student pilot Paola Vianca Robles were retrieved from the plane on Saturday.

Custody of the plane is already with the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP), said Brigadier General Edgardo Mendoza, president of Leading Edge International Aviation Academy Incorporated.

The flight school, based in San Fernando City, La Union, owns the downed plane.

They will be requesting the CAAP to release custody and allow their school to get hold of the plane, Mendoza said.

"Meron nang dalawang team from CAAP [na] pumunta doon sa area [to] gather evidence...They are reviewing all the documents, witnesses, and interviews," Mendoza said.

The Ilocos Sur Police Provincial Office said that the aircraft's pilots may have lost control after it snagged on a zipline cable in a local resort. However, this has yet to be verified as investigation is still ongoing.

The local government of Santiago has yet to receive reports on a possible oil spill from the plane. Mayor Josefino Miranda also headed off rumors that coral was damaged when the plane crashed.

"Wala naman tayong natatanggap na reports ng oil spill. Madaming corals sa cove pero kung saan bumagsak ang eroplano, wala doon sa area na iyon. Walang may kagustuhan ng aksidente at tayo dito makikipagtulungan na lang tayo," Miranda said.

After the investigation, the local government will request for CAAP to give to them the debris of the plane, said Miranda.