Rescuers zero in on possible location of missing Cessna

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, January 28) – Rescuers have zeroed in on the possible location of a Cessna plane carrying six passengers that went missing last Tuesday, Jan. 24.

READ: Search for missing Cessna plane with 6 passengers now at 'full scale'

According to the rescue team, a teacher and a farmer from Barangay Dicaruyan in Isabela province heard a plane flying overhead on Tuesday, and were able to provide authorities with information that may shed light on its flight path.

Engineer Izikiel Chavez of the Divilacan Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (MDRRMO) told a Saturday press briefing that two rescue teams have begun their approach to the search zone dubbed "Site Alpha."

Site Alpha is west of Brgy. Dicaruyan and has an area of about 180 hectares, the MDRRMO said.

It also said that a white object had also been spotted with the use of binoculars in Site Alpha, but the agency could not confirm if it was the Cessna.

The rescuers who saw the white object could not investigate further because of poor weather conditions, it added.

"Itong Site Alpha naka-depende rin sa direksyon ng pagbalik ng eroplano dito kaya pinatingnan ko yung direksyon ng eroplano and ang report is may nakitang white object pero hindi nila nakita if eroplano nga kasi saglitan yung tingin nila," the MDRRMO clarified.

[Translation: Site Alpha is dependent on the direction of the airplane's return which is why we looked at its path. The report was that a white object had been spotted but they couldn't confirm if it was the plane because it was only a short glimpse.]

Chavez explained that rescuers could not see the white object clearly because visibility was hampered by clouds.

He added that it was possible for rescuers to reach Site Alpha by 4 p.m. Saturday, depending on conditions in the area.

"Depende sa dulas ng bato sa bundok at sa pagtatawid nila sa ilog kasi maraming tributaries doon sa site," Chavez said.

[Translation: It depends on how slippery the rocks are in the mountainous area and their crossing of the rivers, as the site has many tributaries.]

If the white object spotted within Site Alpha turns out to be the missing Cessna, police officers on standby in Dicaruyan would proceed to the site and the location would be shared with the Incident Management Team (IMT) for immediate action, the MDRRMO said.

Rescuers on Thursday scoured what was thought to be a possible emergency landing site south of Dicaruyan, but they did not find any trace of the Cessna.

"Pumunta po sila dito sa possible na babanggaan kung sakali man, or pinag-emergency landing ng eroplano," Chavez said.

[Translation: They went to a possible crash site, or where the plane might have made an emergency landing.]