A photo from social media of the crash site.
TOURISM, Investments and Aviation Minister Chester Cooper says officials are hoping to expedite the investigation report into the Long Island plane crash so that they can provide survivors with answers as soon as possible.
“I know that there are some meetings today,” Mr Cooper said before going to a Cabinet meeting yesterday.
“The air accident investigation agency would have some meetings today with the director of aviation and I know they wish to speak with the passengers or anyone else who is aware of what may have happened or has any information so they have sent out a public call for that information. No doubt, they have the information of the passengers on the manifest and will speak with them in due course.”
On Sunday, a twin engine PA-31- 310 plane was flying from Long Island to Nassau carrying seven people when it crashed shortly after takeoff.
Aleitheia Newbold, 22, a mother-of-one, was the only passenger who died in the crash.
Injured survivors were later airlifted to New Providence for medical attention.
In a statement released yesterday, survivor Le’Annka Rigby, daughter of motivational speaker Spence Finlayson, said she was grateful to be alive. She also thanked those who assisted with rescue efforts.
“I am immensely grateful for life after this traumatising ordeal and consider myself truly blessed to have walked away with only severe bruising and slight immobility. I am currently resting and look forward to full physical recovery in the near future,” she said.
She also offered condolences to Ms Newbold’s family.
“Both myself and the pilot administered CPR to Aleitheia in hopes of authorities getting to us in time to preserve her life. Unfortunately, the outcome was not what I hoped for, and I am shattered and heartbroken by her sudden departure. I extend my deepest condolences to you all and I pray for your peace,” she said.
Yesterday, Mr Cooper told reporters it will take some time before investigations into the incident are completed.
However, he said officials are trying to expedite the process “as best as possible”.
“This process takes some time,” he said.
“It’s a very extensive type of investigation that looks at weather conditions and maintenance records and the captain and pilot in command, etcetera, and so we ought to expect that this is going to take several weeks. I’ve heard of situations where these investigations have taken up to a year.”
“We are going to expedite this process as best as possible working along with our partners at air accident investigation authority, working with the civil aviation authority and the director of aviation is very engaged in this process and we hope to be able to give some answers to the Bahamian people and the passengers real soon.”
Utilities and Works Minister Alfred Sears also spoke about the incident yesterday and told reporters that his daughter – Nia Sears - was still being treated in hospital.
He said she had suffered several injuries, including a punctured lung, but was recovering quite well.