Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737 crashes, 90 missing

16:18, January 25, 2010      

Email | Print | Subscribe | Comments | Forum 

An Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737-800 aircraft with 90 people aboard crashed into the sea shortly after takeoff from the Lebanese capital Beirut Monday morning, with the crew all missing, according to local authorities.

Trolleys are seen outside Beirut international airport January 25, 2010. An Ethiopian Airlines plane with 85 passengers on board crashed into the Mediterranean sea shortly after taking off from Beirut international airport in the early hours of Monday, airport sources said. (Xinhua/Reuters Photo)

Witnesses said the plane fell into the Mediterranean Sea after catcing fire. Local police have ruled out the possibility of a terror attack and said it may be caused by bad weather. Prior to the incident, Beirut suffered torrential rain, thunder and lightning.

Now, the Lebanese Navy is stepping up its search for the wreckage.

The plane crashed about 3.5 km (2.1 miles) west of the town of Na'ameh. Naa'meh is 15 km (9 miles) south of Beirut.

The Boeing 737-800 had 83 passengers: 54 Lebanese nationals, 22 Ethiopians, two British-Lebanese, an Iraqi, a Syrian, a Lebanese-Canadian, a Russian-Lebanese and a person from France, said Ghazi El Aridi, Lebanon's minister of public works and transportation.

Ethiopian Airlines spokesman said that the aircraft lost contact with the airport control tower minutes after taking off. The flight was originally scheduled to take off at 2:10 on Monday morning and its flight time to be 4 hours and 40 minutes. However, it was delayed to 2:30 a.m. to take off in the rainstorm, heading to the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa and 5 minutes after disappeared from radar screens.

It is the first major accident of airliners taking off from Lebanon Airport since 1987. Before its happening, Ethiopian Airlines was one of the few safe flight enterprises in Africa and fly a number of important routes in Africa. And the company just announced to purchase 10 Boeing 737-800 aircrafts of new-generation last week.

Ethiopian Airlines is a state-owned company by Ethiopia government and operates a number of scheduled passenger and cargo flights. There are two accidents occurred in 1988 and 1996 separately since its establishment, causing more than 150 people killed totally.

Boeing 737 series aircraft is seen as the most successful airliner in the world's aviation history. With more than 6,000 orders, it is also the largest aircraft family in civil aviation industry. Some aviation experts believed that the Boeing 737’s rudder design might have defects and then might cause suddenly stall and crash.

Trolleys are seen outside Beirut international airport January 25, 2010. An Ethiopian Airlines plane with 85 passengers on board crashed into the Mediterranean sea shortly after taking off from Beirut international airport in the early hours of Monday, airport sources said. (Xinhua/Reuters Photo)

The data show that the voyage of crashed plane is about 5,926 kilometers and its cruising speed had reached 0.785 Mach(530 km/h).

By People's Daily Online
  • Do you have anything to say?

双语词典
dictionary

  
Special Coverage
Major headlines
Editor's Pick
  • Winter fishery in Hainan provides spring festival market with abundant supply
  • "Hot Summer Days" heats up icy Beijing
  • Inter Milan beats AC Milan 2-0
  • Top 10 most expensive real estate markets in the world
  • Ethopian passenger plane crashes into Mediterranean sea
  • Celebs arrive at opening night of "A View From The Bridge" on Broadway
Most Popular
Hot Forum Dicussion