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2020 Ionian Sea helicopter crash

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2020 Ionian Sea helicopter crash
Picture of a similar aircraft to the one involved in the crash
A Royal Canadian Air Force Cyclone, similar to the one involved
Date29 April 2020 (2020-04-29)
SiteIonian Sea
Aircraft typeSikorsky CH-148 Cyclone
OperatorRoyal Canadian Air Force

On 29 April 2020, a Royal Canadian Air Force CH-148 Cyclone helicopter with tail number 822 crashed into the Ionian Sea during a NATO mission, with one confirmed deceased, and 5 remain missing.[1] The helicopter had been reported to be returning to HMCS Fredericton, when it lost contact at around 6:52 p.m. EET. Automatic flares were spotted in the water.[1] The helicopter was about 2 miles (3.22 kilometres) away from HMCS Fredericton, and crashed in full view of numerous crew members who were at flying stations, waiting for it to land.[2]

Passengers and crew[edit]

There were six people on board, including three officers and one enlisted member of the Royal Canadian Air Force, along with two officers of the Royal Canadian Navy.[3]

After a three day search resulted in additional wreckage and unidentified human remains being recovered without any sign of survivors, as of 1 May 2020, all are now presumed dead.[1]


Ships from Canada, Italy, and Turkey, with air support from Greece and the United States, are searching for the CH-148 Cyclone helicopter.[1]

The crash's debris area is large and the exact position of the wreckage is not yet known. The cockpit voice recorder and flight data recorder broke away from the helicopter with a beacon and were retrieved.[1]


On 30 April, it was announced that the entire fleet of Cyclone helicopters would be put on an operational pause, until a fleet-wide problem can be ruled out.[4]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Harris, Kathleen; Brewster, Murray. "1 dead, 5 missing in Canadian military helicopter crash during NATO operations near Greece". CBC News. Retrieved 30 April 2020.
  2. Brewster, Murray. "Canadian Forces chopper crashed in full view of multiple witnesses, military confirms". CBC News. Retrieved 5 May 2020.
  3. Grant, Taryn; Patil, Anjuli. "Nova Scotia naval officer dead after military helicopter crash in Mediterranean Sea". CBC News. Retrieved 30 April 2020.
  4. Scherer, Steve (30 April 2020). "Canadian military helicopter crashes at sea; 1 body recovered, 5 missing". National Post. Retrieved 30 April 2020. Unknown parameter |url-status= ignored (help)

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