2008 Los Roques archipelago Transaven Let L-410 crash
The Let L-410 Turbolet which was involved in the accident.
|Date||4 January 2008|
|Site||Off the Venezuelan coast near the Los Roques archipelago
|Aircraft type||Let L-410 Turbolet|
|Wikinews has related news: Transaven Airlines plane carrying up to 18 people still missing off Venezuelan coast|
On 4 January 2008, a scheduled domestic Transaven flight from Simón Bolívar International Airport to Los Roques Airport, 118 kilometres (64 nmi) north of the departure airport and over water, radioed that both engines had failed and that they were descending through 3,000 feet. The crew was going to attempt a ditching as close as possible to the Los Roques archipelago. Shortly thereafter, radio contact was lost and the plane disappeared from radar.
Another Transaven Let L-410 flew over the area the aircraft was thought to have crashed, but found no trace, other than a spot of liquid on the surface of the water that soon after dissipated.
Active sea and air searches were called off without finding any trace of the aircraft. On 12 January 2008, some fishermen found the body of a man 12 kilometres off the coast of Venezuela. After having performed the autopsy, the doctors determined that it was the corpse of the co-pilot, the 37-year-old Osmel Alfredo Avila Otamendi. At a short distance from the place of discovery of the corpse of the co-pilot his life vest was found.
In April 2008, a Venezuelan navy vessel, using a sonar, was able to identify the presumed wreckage of an aircraft, located approximately 300 metres deep. The wreckage was recovered, but it didn't belong to the disappeared aircraft. Subsequently, search were suspended.
Discovery of the wreckage
On 20 June 2013, more than five years after the accident, the wreckage of the aircraft was located in the sea at a depth of 970 metres (3,180 ft), nine kilometres south of Los Roques. It was discovered by the US flag ship Sea Scout which was working in the area for days. The ship was looking for the wreckage of another crashed aircraft which went down on 4 January 2013.
Passengers and crew
The crew consisted of one Venezuelan pilot and a copilot.
The Italian passengers were:
- a family from Treviso: Paolo Durante, 40 years, his wife Bruna Guerrieri and their daughters Sofia and Emma, six and eight years old respectively;
- Annalisa Montanari, 42 years, and Rita Calanni Rindina, 46 years, from Bologna;
- Stefano Frangione and Fabiola Napoli, on their honeymoon from Rome.
Along with them, there were four other passengers: a Swiss citizen and three Venezuelans.
- Accident description at the Aviation Safety Network
- "L'aereo fantasma delle Los Roques 'Che fine hanno fatto gli otto italiani?'". Repubblica.it (in Italian). 19 January 2008.
- Hradecky, Simon (21 June 2013). "Crash: Transaven L410 near Los Roques on Jan 4th 2008, aircraft went missing and was found 5 years later". The Aviation Herald. Retrieved 21 June 2013.
- (Spanish) "Accidentes Aéreos: Cae al Mar el YV2081, LET-410 en Los Roques el 4-1-2008", VolarEnVenezuela.com, 4 January 2008. Link accessed 5 January 2008.