Witness says MMEA helicopter flew low and spun before crash

KUALA SELANGOR, March 5: The prompt action of an angler in contacting the emergency hotline 999 enabled immediate rescue efforts to be carried out after a helicopter belonging to the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) made an emergency landing in the waters of Pulau Angsa earlier this morning.

Recalling those tense moments, Mohd Riduan Kulop Ahmad, 38, related how he and seven other friends were fishing not far from the location where the crash occured when they saw a helicopter flying low and spinning before crashing into the sea.

“I immediately contacted the emergency hotline 999 to inform the authorities about the crash. Shortly after, I saw rescue personnel arriving to assist those who were in the helicopter,” he said in a brief video shared with the media today.

A video and photos of the crash had gone viral on social media earlier this morning before MMEA director general Adm (Maritime) Datuk Hamid Mohd Amin, issued a statement confirming that an MMAE AW 139 helicopter with registration number M72-01 made an emergency landing in the waters of Pulau Angsa.

According to him, initial information about the crash involving the helicopter piloted by Maritime Lt Cmdr Tengku Mohd Nizam Tengku Zakaria and Maritime Lt Cmdr Mohamad Azrol Saidi, with two other crew members onboard, was received through a call to the MERS 999 hotline by fishermen in the vicinity of the crash.

A search and rescue operation (CARILAMAT) was then launched by the Malaysian Civil Aviation Authority (CAAM) and the Putrajaya Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre at 10.15 am.

All victims were successfully rescued by local fishermen before being transported to the Subang Maritime Air Station.