Rescue crews are actively trying to find a helicopter that is believed to have crashed after it went missing east of Revelstoke, B.C., in Glacier National Park on Friday.
An RCMP spokesperson told CBC News they received a report of a missing helicopter shortly before 7 p.m. PT Friday.
Capt. Pedram Mohyeddin, a spokesperson for Maritime Forces Pacific, said the forces had received word of an overdue private helicopter at around 8:40 p.m. PT in the Revelstoke area.
Ground crews were still searching for the craft around 3:30 p.m. PT on Saturday and believe it “most likely” crashed, Mohyeddin said.
“The joint rescue co-ordination centre is conducting this search as if it is a crashed helicopter, but there is no visual verification at this point,” Mohyeddin told CBC News.
He said the craft believed to be missing was travelling from Calgary, Alta., to Sicamous, B.C., according to its flight plan, but Mohyeddin said rescue crews don’t know how many people were aboard.
Shortly after the craft went missing, “the Canadian Mission Control Centre received a ping from an emergency locator transmitter (ELT) approximately 10 nautical miles [18.5 kilometres] east of Revelstoke,” he said.
Revelstoke is a resort community in the Columbia-Shuswap Regional District, located 400 kilometres northeast of Vancouver and 289 kilometres west of Calgary.
While search-and-rescue and military aircraft were charged with finding the missing helicopter, Mohyeddin told CBC News that low visibility in the area was preventing them from operating.
“Currently ground search-and-rescue, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the Civil Air Search and Rescue Association [CASARA] are searching the vicinity of that ELT signal by ground,” he said Saturday afternoon.
Mohyeddin said the CASARA has provided a drone capable of detecting heat signatures that crews will use to continue the search.
The spokesperson added that crews were searching in the vicinity of Highway 1 for the helicopter.