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Thread: Jet crashed in Medan

  1. #1
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    Default Jet crashed in Medan

    Jet crash claims 117 lives
    September 5, 2005 - 5:01PM


    An ageing Indonesian budget passenger jet crashed into a crowded neighbourhood shortly after takeoff today, killing all 117 people on board as a well as unknown number on the ground.

    Officials said the Mandala Airlines Boeing 737 came down and burst into flames one minute after taking off from Medan on Sumatra on a flight to Jakarta.

    It broke into pieces and set fire to homes and cars.

    The plane, operated by local carrier Mandala Airlines, had 112 passengers and five crew on board, said Asril Tanjung, the airline's director.

    The cause of the crash was being investigated, but foul play was highly unlikely, he said.

    In Canberra, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) was checking whether any Australians were involved.

    The aircraft slammed into the heart of Medan, Indonesia's third largest city, sparking widespread panic.

    Hospital officials and witnesses said some of the dead were residents on the ground.

    Edi Sofyan, a spokesman for the North Sumatra government, said there were no reports of survivors. He added that the governor of the province was on board the flight.

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    AdvertisementFierce flames licked at the wreckage as it lay on one of Medan's main roads. Cars and homes were also on fire and plumes of thick black smoke rose into the air as fire crews tried to extinguish the blazes.

    "I arrived around 10 minutes after the accident. Burning bodies were everywhere," one local reporter said from the scene.

    "Around 10 houses were burned, along with five to six minibuses. The plane was torn into pieces, we could only see the tail."

    Survivors on the ground ran about frantically screaming the names of their relatives, added the reporter.

    Roni, an emergency room nurse at Medan's Adam Malik hospital, said it was chaos as victims were brought in. Other hospital officials said most victims were burnt beyond recognition.

    "Ambulances keep going back and forth bringing the victims, who are both passengers and residents. Some are still alive, some are dead," Roni told Reuters.

    Medan, 1,425 km north-west of Jakarta is the main gateway for aid into tsunami-hit Aceh province.

    Mandala's Tanjung said the plane had been made in 1981 and was fit for eight more years of flying.

    "Temporarily, we are saying the cause is from take-off failure, but we don't know yet whether it was from engine trouble, human error or weather," Tanjung told Reuters.

    The plane came down 500 metres from the runway in Medan, Transport Minister Hatta Radjasa told El Shinta radio station.

    Mandala Airlines is one of Indonesia's oldest private carriers, operating a number of Boeing 737s. It competes in a crowded and competitive market since the establishment of numerous budget airlines in the past five years.

    Indonesia's worst air crash occurred in September 1997, when a Garuda Airbus A-300B4 crashed in a mountainous area near Medan, killing all 222 passengers and 12 crew on board.

    Reuters/AP

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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Jet crashed in Medan

    The news said there are 5 survivors.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Jet crashed in Medan

    Tim, where'd you get the aircraft registration from?

    I took a shot of PK-RIM in Bali last year.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Jet crashed in Medan

    Quote Originally Posted by Terence
    Tim, where'd you get the aircraft registration from?

    I took a shot of PK-RIM in Bali last year.
    one of the 1st wire pix, AP's photo:

    http://news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=stor...jak10109050509

    I was on 2 737s in the last 24hrs, a 737-400 and a 737-86N.
    Last edited by oeyvind; 5th September 2005 at 05:18 PM.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Jet crashed in Medan

    this is really terrible..

    quite a spate of aircrashes lately. and on top of the hurricane in new orleans..

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