The Air Traffic Control had received a Mayday call from the pilots before the crash, suggesting a technical or mechanical failure, the Army said. Mayday is a distress call relayed by pilots over the radio.
“It is reported that the weather was good for flying operations,” the statement said, according to The Hindu. “The pilots had more than 600 combined flying hours on the ALH-WSI [advanced light helicopter-weapon systems integrated] and over 1,800 service flying hours between them.”
The technical failure will be the focus of the court of inquiry, which was immediately constituted to investigate the causes of the accident, the statement added.
Meanwhile, the search operation concluded on Saturday after the fifth body was recovered, said Tezpur defence public relations officer, ANI reported.
The soldiers who died have been identified as Major Vikas Bhambhu, Major Mustafa Bohara, Craftsman Aswin KV, Havalidar Biresh Sinha, and Naik Rohitashva Kumar.
The public relations office of the defence department at Guwahati said that the helicopter had taken off from Likabali town in the Lower Siang district. The site of the crash is not connected by road.