NEWS

EKAB helicopter being raised from seabed

Taking advantage of good weather conditions off the eastern Aegean island of Icaria, rescue teams working from a floating crane yesterday launched an operation to raise a crashed helicopter ambulance from the sea bottom. The National First Aid Center (EKAB) Agusta A109E disappeared with four people on board while on a mercy flight to Icaria on February 11, and its wreckage was only located late on Wednesday at a depth of 75 meters. It still contained the remains of the crew of two pilots, a doctor – whose body was removed on Thursday – and a paramedic. Yesterday, experts on the Aigaio oceanographic vessel, which coordinated efforts to locate the missing craft, said it might take no more than a few hours to raise the helicopter, which settled bottom-up on the seabed. Once it reaches a couple of meters from the surface, divers will attempt to wrench open the doors and extract the three bodies.