OCONGATE, Peru – Searchers have found the bodies of 13 of the 14 people who died in a helicopter crash high in the snowy Andes, Peruvian officials said Sunday.
Police chief Raul Salazar told the Radioprogramas station that the bodies were being taken to Ocongate, the nearest town to the accident, and they have not yet been identified.
The Sikorsky S-58ET helicopter was carrying eight South Koreans and three Peruvians as well as citizens of the Netherlands, Sweden and the Czech Republic when it crashed Wednesday on Mama Rosa mountain at an altitude of about 16,000 feet (4,900 meters).
Prosecutor Cesar Guevara told Television N on Saturday that investigators will carry out DNA tests to help identify the victims.
Eighteen South Korean relatives of those aboard the helicopter are flying to Peru to recover the remains, said South Korean Consul Hwangroh Lee, who went to Cusco, the city from which the helicopter flight originated, to aid in the search effort.
The Koreans were exploring sites for a possible hydroelectric plant. They were employed by Samsung C&T Corp., Korea Water Resources Corp., Korea Engineering Consultants Corp. and the Seoyeong Co.