Bahamas PM sends condolences to families of crash victims

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Bahamas Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis Friday extended condolences to the families of the seven American nationals who died when their helicopter crashed about five miles off Grand Cay in the Abacos on Thursday.

Minnis, who is attending the 40th Caribbean Community (CARICOM) summit here, told reporters that while he could not make a statement on the accident since it is under investigation, he was extending condolences to the families of those killed.

The Bahamas will do all in its powers to see them through this tragedy,” he added.

The Royal Bahamas Police Force reported that the helicopter took off from Big Grand Cay around 2:00 am (local time) on Thursday, en route to Ft. Lauderdale, Florida.

The aircraft was reported missing 53 minutes later when it did not arrive at the intended destination.

The wreckage was later discovered in 16 feet of water, off Grand Cay.

The bodies of four females and three males were retrieved from the aircraft. One of those killed has been identified as 60-year-old Chris Cline, a coal billionaire and philanthropist from the state of West Virginia. His daughter, whose names was not given, was also killed.

In a statement, the Royal Bahamas Police Force said that they are investigating the tragedy along with officials from the Department of Civil Aviation and the Defense Force.

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