Another Plane Crashes

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By Catherine Sasman

WINDHOEK

A Cessna 210 light aircraft rammed into an electric fence above the TransNamib Gammams Training Centre opposite the Pionierspark cemetery after taking off from the Eros Airport at around 08h56 on Friday.

The aircraft, owned by Scenic Air with the registration number V5-LSO, was on its way to Makuti Lodge with an American and French couple when the pilot lost power and failed to gain enough altitude.

The plane flew into an electric cable and one of the wings got hooked in the cable, which police at the scene said reigned in the force with which it went down, stopping it just centimetres from crashing into an old train carriage parked in the procurement store area.

All the five people on board – an American couple, a French couple and the pilot – were rushed to the MediCity and the Roman Catholic hospitals.

The authorities
could, however, not release the names of the tourists or the pilot, as their next of kin had not been informed of the accident by late Friday.

The American and French embassies have been informed of the accident and have been tracing the tourists’ families.

By yesterday, the two Americans and the pilot had been discharged from hospital, and the tourists had boarded a flight to Johannesburg on their way back home.

The French couple, according to Julius Ngweda from the Ministry of Works and Transport, remained in hospital.

Two fire engines, two ambulances and a raft of police and emergency vehicles rushed to the scene of the crash.

The ministry would not give much information on the crash, and merely stated that the Directorate of Aircraft Investigation is currently investigating
the accident.

This is the second plane to crash shortly after take-off from Eros Airport this year.

Director of Scenic Air, Owen Sivertsen, said the South African pilot, who has been working at the company for two months, has 700 hours flying time.

Sivertsen said the old aircraft dated 1979, came out of the maintenance workshop on Thursday, a day before the accident.

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