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Tragedy Strikes As Two Light Aircrafts Collide Over Port Phillip Bay

According to the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA), two light aircrafts collided over Port  Phillip Bay on Sunday afternoon.

Two people are believed to have been on board when the incident occurred around 1:45 pm approximately 12 kilometres west of Mornington. 

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AMSA said both aircraft involved in the incident were former military planes, repurposed for civilian use. 

The planes, engaged in a formation flight over the bay, were identified as Viper S-211 Marchetti light aircraft.

“AMSA understands there were two people on board each aircraft. One aircraft managed to land safely at Essendon airfield, while the other tragically crashed into the waters of Port Phillip,” AMSA spokesperson said.

Search teams, comprising AMSA rescue helicopters, Victoria Water Police boats, coastguard vessels, and jet skis, have been tirelessly working to locate and retrieve the wreckage. 

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Volunteer marine rescue units also helped recover any survivors or evidence.

The crash site, situated far from the shore and submerged in approximately 20 metres of water, posed significant challenges for the rescue teams. 

Ambulances and paramedics remained on standby throughout the afternoon on the shore, prepared to respond to any developments in the search and rescue efforts.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) has been notified of the tragic incident and will lead the investigation. 

Meanwhile, Victoria Police have urged the public to contact Crime Stoppers with any information related to the midair collision. 

A preliminary report from the ATSB is expected to be released in approximately two months.

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