Crash site found at Limpinwood with pilot found deceased

Example image of a Sonerai IILS

A RESIDENT on horseback has located the crash site of missing pilot Ian Sinnott at Limpinwood with the 72-year-old found deceased at 10am this morning.

The searcher on horseback located the wreckage at 9am (Thursday, May 18), on a private property on Boormans Road, Limpinwood.

The pilot was believed to have died at the scene. The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) in Canberra had been coordinating the search after a member of the public reported an aircraft in difficulties near Limpinwood, about 10.45am Tuesday (May 16).

Police from Tweed/Byron Local Area Command confirmed a 72-year-old man was piloting the light aircraft which had taken off from Murwillumbah Airport about 45 minutes earlier.

The search and rescue operations were conducted in the surrounding area since then, involving up to eight helicopters, including the NSW Police airwing PolAir, police on trail bikes, as well as SES volunteers on foot and searchers on horseback.

An operation is now underway to retrieve the man’s body. His family has been informed.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau has been informed by AMSA and investigations will be conducted to determine the cause of the crash, with police working with the relevant air safety authorities.

AMSA and NSW Police would like to thank all those involved in this difficult search operation and extend their sympathies to the family and friends of the pilot.