Searchers find tail parts of downed helicopter

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 18 July, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 18 July, 2010, 12:00am

Parts of the broken tail section of the Macau-bound helicopter that ditched in Victoria Harbour on July 3 have been recovered by investigators. After 11 days probing the harbour bed using sonar imaging equipment and divers, crucial parts of the AgustaWestland AW139 aircraft's vertical fin, including the tail rotor, were found on Wednesday, officials said. Searchers continue to look for smaller parts of the aircraft, which plied the route between Hong Kong and Macau for Sky Shuttle along with five other AW139s. 'The vertical fin including the tail rotor was found on July 14. Extensive efforts have been spent in identifying the possible location and retrieving the missing parts from the harbour,' a Civil Aviation Department spokeswoman said. 'Poor underwater visibility and heavy silt deposits are making the job difficult.' Last week the Sunday Morning Post reported that the AW139 model of helicopter was the subject of a worldwide safety alert at the time of the incident.