16 Aug 2007

Rescue vessel not due in French Polynesia for another 10 days

4:43 pm on 16 August 2007

The French high commission in New Caledonia says a ship equipped with a small submarine will be at the site of last week's French Polynesian plane crash in 10 to 17 days.

The wreck of the Air Moorea Twin Otter is about 450 meters under water and believed to still have six bodies inside.

The vessel to be sent is the Ile de Re of the Alcatel telecommunications company.

It is currently between Australia and New Caledonia and will stop in Noumea before heading to Moorea.

The rescue effort, which is expected to take several days, is also aimed at recovering the plane's voice recorder which will stop giving off signals after 30 days.

The cause of the crash is unknown.