Irish Coast Guard helicopter: Major sea search underway for missing aircraft with 4 crew members

Namrata Tripathi
Irish Coast Guard helicopter: Major sea search underway for missing aircraft with 4 crew members

A major sea search in underway along the west coast of Ireland after a Coast Guard helicopter carrying four crew members went off the radar on Tuesday.

Reports state that one of the crew members has been rescued and is in a critical condition. The helicopter lost contact at around 1 am local time on Tuesday.

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A search team, including an Irish Air Corps plane and local fishing boats, is searching the west of Black Sod in County Mayo for other crew members and the helicopter.

The aircraft was reportedly providing cover to the Coast Guard helicopter on a mission when it lost contact, according to BBC.

The Sligo-based helicopter had been responding to a distress call from a UK fishing vessel that needed medical attention. A second Coast Guard helicopter from Dublin was also assisting in the operation when the aircraft went missing.

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Irish Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport Shane Ross said that the search for the crew members was underway and also expressed his sympathies for their family members.

"As the search for the Dublin-based helicopter R116 is currently underway I would like to express my sincere support and sympathies for all those involved," Ross was quoted as saying by BBC.

"As we await further information I would like to appeal for space to be given to the relevant professionals involved in the search operation to complete their work," he added.

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More details on the incident are awaited.

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