Dangerous Dive: Hamilton Co. forensic dive team faces challenges recovering plane wreckage

Forensic diving instructor John Scruggs says even with warm gear, divers face chilling temperatures in their search for the plane wreckage, and can only be down for about one and a half hours at a time. (Image: WTVC)

As the search for missing pieces of Captain Davey's crashed plane continues, the Hamilton County Sheriff's Office (HCSO) forensic dive team has been a key part in that search.

It's a search the HCSO says the weather, river current, and colder temperatures are also playing an important part in the search.

They are trying to find pieces of the plane in 35 to 45 feet deep water.

They depend on this equipment like helmets/masks, sonar devices and cameras to help pinpoint what's below the surface so they can send divers down to the right location.

Because of the recent rainfall and fast currents, the sheriff's office says it's difficult for the divers to see any more than a foot in front of them.

"With the heavy rains that we've had, with the water flows that we've had, visibility is very very poor to none right now," says forensic diving instructor John Scruggs.

Scruggs also talks about how even with warm gear, divers face chilling temperatures, and can only be down for about one and a half hours at a time.

They also said that they are currently the only agency investigating, and are turning over any information found to the NTSB.

The sheriff's office said that TVA is at flood conditions and is running at 105,000 cubic feet per second, but the forensic dive team is usually more comfortable around 50,000 or 60,000 feet per cubic second.

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