News24

6 dead as plane wreck found in Australia

2012-10-03 11:03

Sydney - All six people on board a vintage red 1930s de Havilland biplane that vanished this week were confirmed dead on Wednesday after the wreckage was found in a dense Australian forest.

Sixteen helicopters and an aircraft had been scouring an area in southeastern Queensland state since late on Monday when the Dragon DH-84 plane, reportedly one of only four in the world, sent a distress call.

"A rescue helicopter sighted the red biplane north of Borumba Dam," said the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA), which was co-ordinating the search.

"The search team has confirmed there are no survivors."

A photo of the crash site posted on Twitter showed the plane disintegrated when it hit the ground near the dam, around 160km north of Brisbane.

The pilot, Des Porter, had been raising funds for charity by giving scenic flights before the plane disappeared as it was heading back to its base in Caboolture.

The 68-year-old pilot survived a crash in the same plane 58 years ago that killed his father and brother, reports said.