Police struggle to identify dead

AGL rescue crew at the scene of the plane wreckage near Imbil. There were no survivors.
AGL rescue crew at the scene of the plane wreckage near Imbil. There were no survivors. Channel 9/Twitter

IDENTIFYING the six people killed in a high-impact plane crash in the Sunshine Coast hinterland could take days.

Queensland Police Disaster Victim Identification crews began the task of recovering the remains yesterday.

The vintage bi-plane slammed into the side of a hill 15km west of Imbil on Monday afternoon but the wreckage was not found until Wednesday.

Pilot Des Porter and his five passengers, his wife Kath and their long-time friends, Les and Janice D'evlin and John and Carol Dawson, were killed.

The De Havilland DH84 Dragon was found during an intensive aerial search.

Superintendent Chris Sang described the crash site as catastrophic.

"It was quite tragic," Supt Sang said.

"It was a horrific thing for six people to die in a plane crash like that.

"It does look as if some of the people have been thrown forward when the plane crashed and landed in the trees."

About 20 forensic officers, together with the Australian Transport Safety Bureau, will continue to recover evidence today.

Chief Superintendent Michael Keating said the procedure was complex.

"It is detailed and time consuming and you need qualified people to be able to do it," Supt Keating said.

"We expect the deceased to be taken to the Victim Identification Centre in Brisbane and from there further forensic procedures will continue.

"The final identification won't be completed for a few days."

The aircraft was returning to Caboolture after spending the day raising money for charity by giving joy flights at the Monto Fly-In aircraft show about 100km west of Bundaberg.

The family of the victims have been offered counselling.

Police will continue to guard the crash site until the victims have been removed.

Topics:  des porter dragon queensland police service

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