5 bodies found after helicopter crashes in United Kingdom mountains

That's preventing the coastguard committing more search and rescue helicopters into the mountains at the moment.

Five bodies have been found with the wreckage of a helicopter that crashed in the Snowdonia area of Wales yesterday.

"I am grateful to them for their determination and dedication, and to those providing support to the families during what is a very hard time".

My thanks go out to the professionalism and commitment of all those personnel involved in this operation.

No other details are being made available to the media at this time.

Police have not revealed the exact location of the crash as the bodies have not been recovered from the "remote and hazardous" terrain.

An investigation led by the Air Accident Investigation Branch (AAIB) is also under way.

Contact was lost with the aircraft on Wednesday afternoon. I am grateful to them for their determination and dedication, and to those providing support to the families during what is a very hard time.

"The teams are operating in very challenging conditions".

Rescue efforts initially focused on the Irish Sea, nearby where the helicopter was believed to have stopped to refuel at Caernarfon Bay.

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Police said they are unable to confirm the identity of those on board until such time as formal identification can take place.

Police are appealing for anyone who saw a low-flying helicopter in the Trawsfynydd area in Snowdonia.

There are no plans to continue to the aerial search unless weather improves significantly.

Kevin and Ruth Burke are both thought to have been on board the helicopter they owned when it went missing on the way to Ireland.

Coastguard commander Mark Rodaway told BBC Breakfast the focus for the search had shifted inland.

The search is being hampered by low lying cloud.

The search for a privately-owned helicopter has ended with the discovery of five bodies on Snowdonia.

The aircraft, based at Caernarfon and St Athan, were sent to scan the area between Caernarfon Bay and the Dublin shore.

The Irish Coastguard said they have been asked to help in the communications search but the main operation is being co-ordinated by the United Kingdom coastguard.

A search operation began at 4.15pm and has now moved to the Irish Sea.

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