About 3 months after the Ghosta incident, which killed a young man, his sister and the pilot, a civilian training plane, Cessna 172 belonging to the Lebanese Aviation Club, crashed in the sea off Halat yesterday.
And the General Directorate of Civil Aviation announced in a statement, “On November 13, 2021, the aircraft belonging to the Aero club Lebanon, type CI72S, with registration OD_PMS, took off from Rafic Hariri International Airport in Beirut at 10:00 local time, towards Byblos, coastal, based on a plan Flight has been previously approved by the Air Navigation Authority of the General Directorate of Civil Aviation. At about 10:24 local time, the plane disappeared from air navigation radar screens over the sea in the Halat area, and there were two people on board, including the pilot. To complete the investigation as soon as possible.”
According to a statement by the Directorate of Guidance at the Army Command, “the units of the naval and air forces, with the participation of the maritime rescue teams in the Civil Defense, immediately began their operations in search of the missing persons on board, the trainer Ali Al-Hajj Ahmed and the trainee Pascal Abdel Ahad.”
And the Directorate of Civil Defense stated in a statement, “The search is focused within a wide circle, at a distance of one kilometer from the shore of the town of Halat, in which depths range between 30 and 35 meters, and teams of civil defense divers take turns in the search in very precise conditions due to the movement of waves and winds in that area. ».
At noon, the location of the crash was determined in cases off the shore. It was reported that teams of civil defense divers are conducting search operations at sea, and army helicopters are escorting in the air.
Head of the Marine Rescue Unit
The head of the Maritime Rescue Unit in the Civil Defense, Samir Yazbek, indicated to Al-Gomhoria that after a long day of inspection, the location where the plane had fallen was almost determined, but neither it nor any of its wreckage has yet been found, and this indicates that the pilot or Whoever was driving it, as if he was able to bring it down quietly and put it in the water, pointing out that the inspection process carried out by the Maritime Rescue Unit, with the support of the army and the air force, will resume today, wishing for satisfactory answers to this humanitarian catastrophe that occurred.
Yazbek explained that the rescue teams reached a depth of 50 meters yesterday without finding anything, except for a headset and a life jacket, which are still wrapped and unused.
He pointed out to the difficulties that the rescue teams faced yesterday, including the air and the large high waves, which imposed difficulty in the inspection, but the rescue teams will not calm down and will continue their work until the plane and those on it are found.
Official follow up
President of the Republic, Michel Aoun, was following the details of the incident of the crash of a civilian training plane into the sea off the town of Halat.
For his part, Prime Minister Najib Mikati contacted the army command and requested that a helicopter be sent to help in the search for the plane, and also requested the mobilization of the navy in the search and rescue mission.
In turn, the Minister of Interior and Municipalities, Judge Bassam Mawlawi, inspected the site of the crash. As soon as he was informed, he went to the marine area with a helicopter belonging to the Lebanese army, and was briefed on the rescue operations from the air, then he went through the boats of the Civil Defense to the open sea, and was briefed by the army and civil defense teams on the search and rescue process for the missing people who were on board the plane to find out their fate.
After the inspection tour, Mawlawi said: “We have mobilized all the state agencies, including the civil defense, the army, and the security forces, to put all their capabilities and capabilities to begin the rescue operation. Squares, for divers to survey the site of the plane crash, and there are a large number of volunteers with their equipment and supplies, and God willing, we can rescue the missing.”
Mawlawi thanked the civil defense agencies and elements for their missions, calling for “the need to obtain their rights due to the sacrifices they make,” stressing “the need to take measures from the Ministry of Works to inspect the training planes within the issue of public safety, so that such incidents do not recur.”