Sunday, January 1st, 2017, 6:00 p.m.
CLEVELAND — Crews from the Cleveland Division of Fire, the United States Coast Guard, Underwater Marine Contractors, and the Cleveland Division of Police have temporarily suspended search and recovery operations due to darkness. Search and recovery operations for the Cessna 525 Citation aircraft that went missing Thursday evening will resume at first light tomorrow, January 2nd.
During the course of search and recovery operations on January 1st, Unified Command received multiple reports of debris washing ashore east of Burke Lakefront Airport. The Cleveland Division of Police is leading the investigation and is following up on all reports of debris. Anyone who sees debris overnight should call the non-emergency number of the Cleveland Division of Police at 216-621-1234 or Burke Lakefront Airport at 216-781-6411.
“We want to remind everyone that this is an active investigation,” said Calvin Williams, Chief of Police. “If you see something that could be debris from the plane, we are asking people to avoid touching it, and to call the Division of Police immediately.”
The Cleveland Division of Police is continuing to investigate the contents of a bag recovered earlier today in the vicinity of the Shoreby Club Harbor in Bratenahl. Other debris has not yet been verified as being part of the Cessna 525 Citation.
Search and recovery operations for today included five boats as well as the Cleveland Division of Police helicopter. These five boats came from the Cleveland Division of Fire, the U. S. Coast Guard, and Underwater Marine Contractors. Four of these boats utilized sonar to perform a grid based search near the last known location of the aircraft. The fifth boat surveyed the shoreline for any debris that has washed ashore.
Search and recovery operations are expected to resume at first light on January 2nd. Weather conditions on Lake Erie tomorrow will be a high of 48 degrees and a chance of light rain after 3 p.m. according to the National Weather Service.