MOSCOW, October 28. /TASS/. Russia’s Ministry for Emergency Situations will dispatch a search and rescue team to Norway to locate the Russian Mi-8 helicopter that went missing off the coast of Svalbard Island, the ministry’s press service told TASS on Saturday.
"In the near future, an Ilyushin Il-76 aircraft of the Russian Emergencies Ministry will head for Norway, carrying rescuers and necessary equipment," the press service said. "The search and rescue team will include divers-rescuers of the Tsentrospas State Central Airmobile Rescue Team and the Leader Center for High Risk Rescue Operations reporting themselves to the Russian Emergencies Ministry."
The Il-76 will deliver cutting-edge equipment made in Russia to the search area. The equipment will include a Falcon small-sized remotely operated underwater vehicle, which is a new generation device used for search operations in costal or inland waters at depths of up to 1,000 meters. The rescuers will be also equipped with compressors, motor boats of unique class and diving apparatuses for examining underwater objects.
On October 26, a helicopter of the Conversavia airline, carrying eight people, was en route from the mothballed community of Pyramiden to Barentsburg when contact with the aircraft was lost. At 15:35 local time (16:35 Moscow time), a call alerted the rescue center that the helicopter had gone missing.
There were five crew and three employees of the Russian Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute on board the helicopter. It was in a proper technical condition and underwent maintenance before the flight, Conversavia said. An investigation was opened by the North-Western Investigative Department on Transport Safety of the Russian Investigative Committee.