Argentina Plane Crash Kills Five : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread


Argentina Plane Crash Kills Five

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) -- An Argentine air force plane crashed minutes after taking off Thursday from an airport near the border with Chile, killing all five officers on board.

The Fokker F27 caught fire after leaving the runway, crashing in a field in Medoza. Local news reports said the pilot may have been attempting an emergency landing when the plane plunged to the ground and caught fire.

An air force spokesman, Jorge Reta, said the cause of the crash was unknown and an investigation was being launched by the air force.

''There weren't any weather problems, so we're thinking it was a technical problem. But we can't rule out any possibilities,'' said Reta, speaking with the independent news agency Noticias Argentinas.

The 44-seat Fokker, a Dutch plane that has been part of the military's fleet since the late 1960s, was gutted before firefighters arrived. The blackened fuselage, its belly split open, came to rest upside down. Its tail was still intact.

The dead were identified as two pilots and three junior officers, according to the news agency Diarios y Noticias. No one was killed or injured on the ground.

The plane belonged to an air force brigade based in Parana, 235 miles northwest of Buenos Aires. Reports said it was just beginning the flight home from Mendozain western Argentina when it crashed.

AP-NY-05-17-01 2035EDT< 

-- Rachel Gibson (, May 18, 2001

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