13 Aug 2014

First report on plane crash in American Samoa released

1:57 pm on 13 August 2014

A ground crewman at Pago Pago airport says he had warned a father and son team, whose aircraft crashed in the waters of American Samoa last month, that winds would be gusty and strong all day and into the evening.

The preliminary investigation is underway into why the plane, piloted by 17-year old Haris Suleman, crashed into the ocean.

Mr Suleman's body was recovered, but his father Babar Suleman, is still missing and is presumed dead.

The preliminary report says the wind had been gusty and strong, and as the plane moved down the runway and took off, it was moving up and down and side to side, struggling to gain altitude.

The report says before the aircraft reached the end of the runway, it banked to the right towards the ocean, then disappeared.