Two missing crew members of a Canadian air force transport helicopter that crashed in a river near a base west of the capital Ottawa have been found dead, officials said Wednesday.
The heavy-lift CH-147F Chinook carrying four members of 450 Tactical Helicopter Squadron crashed early Tuesday morning in the Ottawa River near Garrison Petawawa, Ontario during a training flight.
Two crew members were located and taken to hospital. They were treated for minor injuries and released, while a search was launched for the others.
“Tragically, I can confirm that the two missing Canadian Armed Forces members were found deceased by searchers yesterday,” Defense Minister Anita Anand told a new conference.
The Petawawa base is located 165 kilometers (100 miles) west of Ottawa.
Few details about the circumstances of the crash were released, and the identities of the deceased crew members were withheld.
“It was a normal, regular night training event,” said Major General Sylvain Menard.
The military, with the help of police dive teams and firefighters scoured the shores of the Ottawa River and its waters for survivors after the crash.
Boaters had been urged by the military to stay clear of the area to avoid “potentially hazardous materials from the aircraft” including leaked fuel, and the town of Petawawa temporarily halted intake of drinking water from the Ottawa River as a precaution.
According to the Royal Canadian Air Force, the CH-147F Chinook is a multipurpose helicopter used to transport equipment and personnel for operations at home and abroad.
The crashed helicopter was one of 15 Canada bought in 2013 from Boeing with extra large fuel tanks to fly longer distances across the vast Canadian territory.
They have been deployed to assist in floods and wildfires in Canada, as well as in Mali to support a UN security mission.