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Military helicopter did not respond as expected before crash: Investigators

FILE - A Cyclone helicopter flies over HMCS Fredericton as its crew leaves the Halifax Harbour for a six-month deployment to the Mediterranean Sea as part of NATO's Operation Reassurance in Halifax on Monday, January 20, 2020. Defence officials are scrambling following reports a Canadian military helicopter has gone missing while participating in a NATO operation in the Mediterranean Sea.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darren Calabrese
Summary

Investigators will now focus on the helicopter's various systems and role "human factors" played in crash: report


Military officials have previously said the full investigation could take up to a year


Six members of the Canadian Armed Forces were on board when the Cyclone helicopter crashed on April 29


OTTAWA — Flight investigators have determined the military helicopter that crashed off the coast of Greece in April did not respond as the crew on board expected before going down into the Mediterranean Sea.

The finding is in a preliminary investigation report published today by the Royal Canadian Air Force and says investigators will now focus on both the Cyclone helicopter’s various systems and what role “human factors” played in the crash.

Military officials have previously said the full investigation could take up to a year.

Six members of the Canadian Armed Forces were on board when the Cyclone helicopter crashed on April 29 while deployed with the Halifax-class frigate HMCS Fredericton.

The report says the Cyclone flew past the ship before turning back to land and that during a “final complex” turn close to the ship, the helicopter did not respond as expected, entered a “high-energy descent” and hit the water.

The air force says it is keeping the rest of the helicopter fleet temporarily grounded until a risk assessment is completed.