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Search for crashed aircraft in Sultan Kudarat resumes

Breaking News • 14:03 PM Mon Jun 15, 2015
Ferdinandh Cabrera and Edwin Fernandez
(photo by Ferdinandh Cabrera)

LEBAK, Sultan Kudarat - Members of the Lebak municipal search and rescue team prepare for 45-50 kilometer rough road travel Sunday afternoon to locate what could be a hugeaircraftthat crashed in the mountains of Sultan Kudarat.In Camp Siongco, Maguindanao, home of the 6th Infantry Division, Capt. Joann Petinglay said sear and rescue operations of the Philippine Air Force will resume today, good weather permitting.Local officials quoted residents of the mountain villages of Lebak and Esperanza, both in Sultan Kudarat province that they heard a loud mid-air explosion at past 11 a.m. Sunday.Military helicopters were sent to conduct search operation but returned empty handed. Two choppers from the 505th Air Force Wing in Zamboanga City have been sent to help locate the flying object.Speculations as to what caused the very loud explosion in the mountain borders of Sultan Kudarat and Maguindanao varied as of this posting. As far as the military is concerned, nobody has reached the exact location to determine correct information about the incident, Petinglay, speaking for the 6th ID said.Army troopers in Ampatuan, Maguindanao were sent to the Daguma ranges but were stopped by heavy downpour.In the social media, speculations also spread Sunday that it was a passenger and commercial aircraft but the reported airline, Cebu Pacific, issued statement all its aircraft were accounted for.The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) also issued statement that no commercial plane or private plane went missing as of Sunday.Another report said it could be the unmannedTropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) Spacecraft that was put in orbit 17 years ago to study rainfall for weather and climate research.It could be the space craft or its debris that fell in the mountains of Sultan Kudarat.The spacecraft operated by NASA and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) explode and disintegrate in the atmosphere after uncontrolled descent from orbit 250 miles above the earth. It was supposed to fall on earth on June 17. All of these were speculations and unverified. We are still searching the ground zero, Petinglay said.

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