The search team prowling the waters where a helicopter belonging to oil company Lukoil plunged into the sea on Thursday resulting in the death of at least three out of eight passengers have retrieved parts of the crashed chopper.
The fuselage is however yet to be retrieved while the team is still looking for one passenger feared dead after four survivors were rescued Thursday. Aviation authorities say three of the survivors are responding well to treatment while the fourth has been transferred to Accra for closer care.
It is still unclear what may have caused the accident that was detected a few hours after the crew failed to arrive at destination.
Meanwhile the Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (ACAA) has launched a full-scale investigation into the circumstances that led to the crash of the Ivorian registered helicopter with the registration identity as TUHAA.
The authority said they would not hazard any hasty suggestions as to what caused the crash until investigations were concluded.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Energy and Petroleum and the Petroleum Commission confirm that a service helicopter flying under the name Black Hawk and operated by Volta River Aviation Ltd crashed off the Ghana coast in waters approximately 4 nautical miles south of Takoradi.
The helicopter on contract with LUKOIL Overseas Ghana Limited, was on a routine crew shuttle mission transporting personnel to the Jack Ryan rig, with eight persons aboard, when it was reported missing at 13.07 hours.
The helicopter, which had undertaken two successful rotations earlier, took off from the Takoradi Airport at 12.59 hours on its third rotation when the incident occurred.
A search and rescue mission was launched immediately with support from the Ghana Navy, Ghana Air Force and other operators in the area. Survivors have been transported for medical attention to local hospitals.
Three fatalities have been confirmed and an intensive search is underway to locate one person who remains missing.
LUKOIL Overseas Ghana Ltd is an International Oil Company operating in Ghana. It is the operator of the Deep Water/Cape Three Points Block, which has Vanco Ghana Ltd and The Ghana National Petroleum Corporation as partners.
The Ministry, on behalf of its agencies, wishes to extend its sincere condolences to the bereaved families and wishes the survivors this tragic accident a speedy recovery, as all efforts are being made to accord them the best of medical care.