NTSB Investigation Underway to Find Plane That Crashed off Hawaiian Coast

Photos: Getty Images

A Boeing 737 cargo plane had to make an emergency landing in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Hawaii, Friday. At approximately 1:40 am Friday morning, the pilots of the Transair Flight 810 reported engine troubles and were trying to divert the plane back to Honolulu. As they tried to divert the plane back to Honolulu, they were forced to land the aircraft in the Pacific Ocean. According to U.S. Coast Guard Lt. Karin Evelyn, about an hour after the initial report of the plane going down by the pilots, rescuers in a Coast Guard helicopter spotted the two pilots and debris scattered in the water. The crash took place about 2-4 miles away from the Kalaeloa Airport.

One of the pilots was airlifted via helicopter to the Queens Medical Center in Honolulu. The 58-year-old pilot was admitted into the intensive care unit in critical condition. The other pilot was brought to shore by a rescue boat. Medical officials treated and later transported him to a local medical facility in serious condition with several lacerations all over his body.

In Air Traffic Control audio released by liveatc.net, one of the pilots can be heard telling the aviation tower that they had lost the number one engine and they were worried about potentially losing the second engine because it was showing extremely high temperatures. The pilot would then ask the aviation tower to alert the Coast Guard.

The National Transportation Safety Board is currently investigating the crash. In an update Monday, the NTSB said they are interviewing all the individuals involved and are looking into the exact location of the plane.

“The plan today was to go out with side scan sonar to begin mapping the debris field and to get a sense of the aircraft, where it is on the ocean floor and what challenges that might present for us moving ahead.”

said Chris O'Neil - chief of media relations for the NTSB

One of the biggest challenges investigators are facing is how far beneath the surface the plane may be.

“We believe it’s in between 150 and 350 feet of water. So certainly the deeper it is, the more challenging it will be to recover the recorders.”

Chris O'Neil would mention

10 investigators were sent to Hawaii to look into why the plane went down early Friday. U.S. Coast Guard officials have already been recovering items from the crash.

There was an organizational meeting, Saturday, conducted by the NTSB and involved various organizations that include the Federal Aviation Administration, Boeing, Pratt and Whitney, Rhoades Aviation, and the National Air Traffic Controllers Association to further look into the crash, its potential cause, and recovery efforts.

A safety zone is currently in place surrounding the salvage area. The NTSB will conduct its field investigation over the next 10-15 days and a preliminary report could be issued within a few weeks, while a complete final report could take longer.

“Currently at the National Transportation Safety Board, major investigations are taking between 12 and 24 months to complete."

Chris O'Neil would state

The Transair Boeing 737-200 is the largest aircraft to crash into Hawaiian waters, according to the NTSB's database.

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