Crash site found in search for overdue aircraft

Australian Maritime Safety Authority

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) has located the crash site of a missing Mooney M20 in rugged terrain in the Mid North Coast area.

AMSA has been responding to reports of the overdue aircraft since Friday morning.

The aircraft, a Mooney M20 with two people on board, departed from Murwillumbah at 0630 (AEST) on Friday and was expected to arrive at Taree by 0800 (AEST) the same day.

AMSA was contacted by associates of the pilot who raised concerns when the aircraft did not arrive at its destination.

About 0630 (AEST) on Saturday the Westpac rescue helicopter (Westpac 4) located the crash site in the search area about 27 kilometres west of Coffs Harbour.

The search area was based on the last contact with the aircraft’s transponder.

Westpac 4 was unable to winch a person down due to poor weather conditions with rain and low clouds extending to ground level.

NSW Police are now attempting to access the site from the ground. This is will take some time as the site is located in steep and heavily wooded terrain and weather conditions in the area remain poor.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) have been informed and will be responsible for any investigation into the crash.

AMSA would like to thank all those involved in this difficult search.

/Public Release.