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6月25日のまにら新聞から

6 PAF personnel die in chopper crash in Tarlac: DND

[ 255 words|2021.6.25|英字 (English) ]

Six Philppine Air Force (PAF) personnel died when its newly-acquired S-70i Blackhawk helicopter crashed in the vicinity of Crow Valley near Clark Air Base in Pampanga on Wednesday night.

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana confirmed this in a statement Thursday morning.

"We at the Department of National Defense extend our deepest sympathies to the families of the three pilots and three airmen of an S-70i Blackhawk helicopter of the Philippine Air Force who perished when their plane crashed in the vicinity of Crow Valley near Clark Air Base, Pampanga, after undertaking a night proficiency flight on Wednesday evening," he said.

"The entire Blackhawk fleet are grounded while the incident is being investigated, " said Lorenzana.

Lt. Col. Maynard Mariano, PAF spokesman, the helicopter is among the six S-70i Blackhawk helicopters delivered in 2020.

"This is from the first batch of the helicopter definitely because the second batch of the helicopter has not yet been received formally," he said.

Mariano said based on an initial report the search for the helicopter was made after it failed to return in its station on schedule.

Lorenzana said the "night flight proficiency trainings are part of the capabilities of the pilots and crew, in this case the Blackhawk S70i, prior to their full deployment to assist our frontline units in their missions."

"Although with inherent risks, this competency is vital and necessary for the transport and logistics requirements of Unified Commands," he said.

Mariano said the helicopter took off from its station at Clark Air Base, Pampanga around 8pm. Robina Asido/DMS