THE Philippine Air Force (PAF) has grounded all its OV-10 Bronco planes after one of the said aircraft went down off the coast of Palawan while on a regular night proficiency flight training.
Air Force spokesman Col. Miguel Ernesto Okol disclosed said on Monday that an investigation board has already been formed to investigate the cause of the accident.
“Well, we’re concentrating on the search first. It’s automatic, the 15th Strike Wing has already formed an investigation board and that would be convened immediately as a matter of fact but first we have to get through this critical period, we have to get to the bottom of it first,” Okol said.
The PAF has a squadron of OV 10 (8 to 12 planes) in its inventory.
Okol said that the ill-fated OV-10 went down some five nautical miles from runway 27 or somewhere within the Palawan Bay area as indicated by the plane’s tracking device, adding that debris have already been recovered by the search and rescue team in the crashed site but the mainframe remains missing.
“We have already recovered debris within that grid square. So we are concentrating there,” he said even as he stressed that “what we can confirm right now is the aircraft went down.”
According to Okol, the Palawan tower did not sense anything that the plane was in trouble as the pilot has not sent a distress signal before it disappeared.
He said that, the pilot informed the tower that he was on final approach to the runway.
“He has no distress [signal], he has no mayday. So we are still finding out why,” Okol added.