NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – This past Saturday the Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency was gearing up for a typical Memorial Day Weekend when they were suddenly challenged with the task of a plane crash on Percy Priest Lake.
They quickly coordinated with over a dozen county, state and federal authorities to respond swiftly to secure the scene and recover the downed aircraft.
“We are thankful to work in a state where different agencies can, and do work together so well, pooling resources and communicating efficiently towards a common goal,” they said on their TWRA Facebook Page this morning.
The TWRA is most known for its work with hunting, fishing and wildlife conservation, but they are also prepared for rescue and recovery operations.
That training and preparation was paramount in how they were able to aid in the recovery operations.
One of their important contributions was an underwater sonar device they are trained to operate called an ROV (remote operated vehicle), that helped find the plane’s wreckage in zero visibility conditions.
“It’s basically a small submarine,” explained Barry Cross, TWRA Region 2 Communications and Outreach Coordinator. “It’s remote-controlled. The operator sits on a boat. The cord, the umbilical cord that is attached to the ROV, supplies the power.
“The ROV can go down. It can identify something. It can actually go up to that item of interest and attach to it, and divers can follow the umbilical cord down to it.”
The FAA and NTSB will continue the investigation.
Our thoughts and prayers go out to friends and family of the victims of this accident.