Despite rough weather and harsh terrain, the body of Captain Imran Khan was recovered and flown to the city at around 08:00hrs on Tuesday. His family indicated that they would be having a private memorial service on Tuesday afternoon, and that details of his burial are yet to be sorted out.
The body departed Mahdia by an Air Services Limited Caravan for Ogle, and arrived at around 08:00hrs.
The GDF explained that, after feverish attempts, the rescue pilots were unable to have a visual of the extraction point, and the mission was put on hold late Monday afternoon.
An autopsy is expected to be performed to determine whether Captain Khan died on impact.
41-year-old Captain Imran Khan, a resident of the Essequibo Coast, Region 2, had been attached to Air Services Limited (ASL), and had been flying from Chi-Chi to Mahdia when the Cessna 206 (8R-GFM) aircraft went down on Sunday.
Flying solo, Captain Khan had reportedly been expected to arrive at Mahdia at 08:47hrs, but had been a ‘no show’. An emergency locator transmitter (ELT) signal being emitted from the crashed aircraft and picked up at 09:08hrs was identified as coming from an area west of Mahdia.
A rescue operation involving the Guyana Defence Force’s 31 Special Forces Squadron was immediately mounted, but because of the mountainous terrain, search-and-rescue (SAR) operators had to trek to the crash site, where they found the lifeless body of Captain Imran Khan.
Preliminary reports suggest that the aircraft may have crashed into a mountain before diving into the heavy jungle. The aircraft is badly mangled, and it is believed that Captain Khan may have been pitched from the plane following the impact.
Due to the conditions of the terrain, the rescue team had to trek for approximately 3 hours, cutting through thick vegetation to reach the crash site from the landing zone.
The investigation by the Accident and Incident Investigation Group (AIG) will examine all possible circumstances that could have contributed to the occurrence of this latest accident, including weather conditions, pilot’s flight and duty hours, and the type of operations the pilot was conducting.
The Director General of the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), Lt. Col. (ret’d) Egbert Field, has said that surveillance and inspection of air operators, aircraft and other aspects of aviation operations will continue with more frequency. He added that they would be meeting with domestic operators today to discuss safety among other issues. (Lakhram Bhagirat)