Chile: Plane that vanished en route to Antarctica found

Chile: Plane that vanished en route to Antarctica found
Air Force Gen. Eduardo Mosqueira speaks during a news conference at his headquarters in Punta Arenas, Chile, Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2019. Chilean officials say they've found debris believed to be from a transport plane that vanished en route to Antarctica. (AP Photo/Fernando Llano)

SANTIAGO, Chile (AP) — Chilean officials said Thursday that searchers have located the military transport plane that disappeared en route to Antarctica.

Defense Minister Alberto Espina also said at a news conference that they have found human remains from some of the 38 passengers who were aboard when the plane took off from southernmost Chile.

The C-130 Hercules departed Monday afternoon from a base in far-southern Chile on a regular maintenance flight for an Antarctic base. Radio contact was lost 70 minutes later.

Within several hours, the Air Force declared the plane a loss, but it wasn’t until Wednesday that a plane scanning the seas first spotted floating debris believed to be from the plane.

“Remains of human beings that are most likely the passengers have been found among several pieces of the plane,” said Air Force Gen. Arturo Merino.

Officials said they believe that all 38 people aboard the plane are dead, adding that it was nearly impossible to expect that any survivors to be found.