Family members of the two occupants who reportedly went missing on an overdue aircraft were given investigation updates by the Royal Bahamas Defence Force and personnel from the Aircraft Accident Investigation Authority (AAIA) on Tuesday 9th March 2021.
During a briefing at HMBS CORAL HARBOUR, the RBDF Search and Rescue Coordinator, Commander William Sturrup, informed family members that the search efforts have now become a search and recovery operation, due to the elapsed length of time in which the aircraft was last heard from. He further went on to explain that the organization will continue its ongoing search efforts, which will be centered around the southern Bahamas, where the aircraft was last seen on radar.
Mr. Kendall Dorsett Jr., Operations Investigator of the Aircraft Accident Investigation Authority of The Bahamas and Mr. Delvin Major, Chief Investigator AAIA, both spoke on the investigation process, and assured the family members that they will be updated as information becomes available. Also, in attendance was Captain Shawn Adderley, Acting Captain Coral Harbour.
The white and yellow Piper PA28 aircraft, which departed Lynden Pindling International Airport at Friday March 5, 2021, enroute to Inagua, was last heard from shortly after 8:00 am Friday. After reports of a missing aircraft in the vicinity of Acklins, the RBDF Operations Command Center was notified, and Defence Force assets joined in the search along with a USCG cutter, a USCG fixed-wing, and a USCG helo.
The Royal Bahamas Defence Force continues to work with its partnering agencies for the missing aircraft.