Chennai, July 10: In a major breakthrough, Indian Coast Guard on Friday confirmed that the debris of its missing Coast Guard Dornier aircraft has been found. The ICG officials also said that the Flight Data Recorder (FDR) also located off Tamil Nadu coastline.
The debris was located along the Chidambaram-Cuddalore coastline. The aircraft with three crew members had gone missing since June 8. [Chennai: Dornier aircraft missing with 3 crew members]
An official communication issued by the ICG spokesperson at 6.10 pm on Friday said that Indian Navy's submarine Sindhudhavaj picked up a barrage of transmissions in a depth of 996 meters on July 6. [Massive search launched for missing Dornier]
"This information was a vital source for deployment of the Reliance vessel, Olympic Canyon to localize the search. Consequently, the unrelenting and uninterrupted search which, included 693 hours of surface effort and 196 hours of air effort finally yielded positive results," the spokesperson said.
The ICG officials said that Multifunctional Support Vessel (MSV) of Reliance India Limited with integrated Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) was able to locate and recover the FDR and one Line Replacement Unit (LRU). [Submarine Sindhudhvaj joins massive search ops]
"The FDR and LRU have been located at 950 meters and this is the first time ever the salvage has been found at such depths," an official said.
The combined mission for the aircraft launched a month ago is codenamed Operation Talash. [We are dying every second: Missing Dornier officer's kin to Narendra Modi]
Twelve agencies were involved in the mission including the ICG, Indian Navy, Indian Air Force, Coastal Security Group, National Institute of Oceanographic Technology, Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services, National Remote Sensing Centre, Naval Physical Oceanographic Laboratory, Naval Operations Data Processing and Analysis Centre, Geological Survey of India, Reliance Industries Limited and private volunteers including fishing community. [Missing Dornier aircraft: Wife of pilot seeks PM's assistance]
The search efforts comprised of 25 ICG and naval ships with over 2000 personnel extending help. The search area was spreading over 30600 square metres.