Battling rain, snakes and dense jungle, rescuers finally reached the crash site of a DC-9 airliner on a Philippine mountain Wednesday - but found none of the 104 people who had been aboard.
The army team, which took nearly two days to get to the wreckage, found pieces of seat cushions, scattered clothes and business cards at the edge of a deep ravine, said Col. Jacinto Ligot.Rescuers climbed down the nearly vertical slope of the ravine Wednesday to search for bodies and more wreckage, which they believed slid down after the initial impact. The rescuers were joined by five paramedics lowered by rope from helicopters.
More debris, including a blood-stained blanket and airline documents, was found on a neighboring mountain, apparently blown there by strong winds.
The 31-year-old plane apparently disintegrated on impact, air force pilots who flew over the scene said.
The twin-engine Cebu Pacific Air plane crashed Monday nearly 30 miles northeast of its destination, Cagayan de Oro, a southern Philippine city on the island of Mindanao.
Ligot said 21 soldiers had reached the crash site near the peak of Mount Sumagaya, a steep 7,260-foot ridge. More than 100 others were en route.
The plane had made an unscheduled stop at another airport and was not on its normal flight path from Manila, so it was forced to make a visual - instead of instrumental - landing approach into Cagayan de Oro through high mountains and deep ravines.