By Ariel Fernandez
The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) has confirmed that a student pilot on board a CESSNA C-152 aircraft has been reported missing since July 28 after he took off from Baler, Quezon for a solo flight.
CAAP Spokesman Eric Apolonio refused to give the identity of the student pilot while a search for the victim is ongoing.
The CESSNA C-152 was registered under Omni Aviation Corporation with registry number RPC-3604.
The said pilot was on final training in solo flight when he took off last Sunday at around 9:38 a.m. for his Clark-Baler route.
He went missing since 5 p.m. on Monday. Search and rescue operations are ongoing around the areas of Ma. Aurora and San Luis in Quezon.
Based on reports, the aircraft departed Baler at 3:08 p.m. bound for Clark. At 5:47 p.m., Clark tower officials reported that the aircraft was missing as they lost contact with the pilot on board.
CAAP said helicopters from the Philippine Air Force were dispatched to search the area but they returned due to bad weather and the poor visibility in the area.
Another PAF Huey helicopter was dispatched on Monday to search for the missing aircraft.