Aircraft deviated from route, hit a cliff

 
“The chopper hit the cliff, crashed and exploded. All the five persons in the ill-fated helicopter were burnt to death,” state Finance Minister K Rosaiah and Chief Secretary P Ramakanth Reddy said here on Thursday. The chopper might have deviated from its path because of a large cloud formation due to bad weather and ended up hitting the cliff, they said.

Except the tail portion, the body of the Bell-430 helicopter of AP Aviation Corporation was reduced to bits and pieces in the mishap. The helicopter crashed 10 km away from Rudrakoderu on a hostile terrain and army commandos had to slither down with the help of a rope from a rescue helicopter.

“Initially three bodies were traced and then the fourth one was found. It took a while to locate the fifth body,” Director General of Police S S P Yadav said. The Chief Minister’s body would be placed in his camp office and shifted to Lal Bahadur Stadium where it would be kept for people to pay homage.

Bodies identified by clothes

The bodies of AP Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy and four others were identified by their clothes as they were charred beyond recognition in the crash, reports IANS from Hyderabad.

“We go by evidence like what clothes one is wearing. A pilot wears a particular uniform and we can find traces of that uniform on the body,” said state Director General of Police S S P Yadav.

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