UN CHARTERED PLANE CRASHES IN KINSHASA
News overnight put the death toll of the latest air crash in Congo to now 32 out of a reported 33 on board, with several survivors initially pulled from wreckage of the UN chartered plane then later passing away in hospital due to severe injuries sustained. The jet crashed on landing in the Congolese capital Kinshasa yesterday in the early afternoon, broke into pieces and then caught fire. The CRJ 100 jet’s flight had come from the Eastern Congolese city of Goma and had according to reports from there flown via Kisangani to Kinshasa, carrying UN personnel. Foreign and Congolese passengers are also said to be amongst those who perished in this latest crash in the Congo DR, albeit this time with a more modern jet aircraft operated on behalf of the United Nation’s MONUC peace keeping mission.
According to aviation sources the airport at the time of the crash experienced heavy winds and strong gusts, which may have been a factor in the crash as the plane was about to touch down, but specific details on the crash causes will have to wait until the air accident investigation is complete.
It is understood that the UN may call upon the NTSB to assist in the enquiry now going underway and experts from Bombardier, the manufacturers of the stricken craft, are also expected to fly to Kinshasa to assist in the evaluation of data from the two on board recorders, which have been recovered from the wreckage.
Condolences are expressed to the families, friends and colleagues from the UN on this sad occasion.