Algeria’s national airline, Air Algerie, has stated that flight AH 5017 carrying 116 people has crashed about 50km (30 miles) from Burkina Faso’s border in Mali.
The passenger flight had taken off from Burkina Faso’s Ougadougou and had been destined for Algiers, but went missing approximately 50 minutes after take-off.
Air Algerie confirmed that the plane has been found in Mali, hours after it had gone missing when the airplane fell off the radar after pilots reported bad weather conditions.
According to a statement by Swiftair, from which Air Algerie Chartered the MD83 aircraft which was carrying 110 passengers and six crew members, officials had been unable to establish any contact with the plane.
Meanwhile, an Air Algerie source quoted by AFP news agency stated that “the crew was asked to make a detour because of poor visibility and to prevent the risk of collision with another aircraft on the Algiers-Bamako route…Contact was lost after the change of course.”
The passengers included 51 French citizens, 27 from Burkina Faso, eight Lebanese, six Algerians, two form Luxembourg, five Canadians, four Germans, one Cameroonian, one Belgian, one Egyptian, one Ukrainian, one Swiss, one Nigerian and one Malian. The six crew members were all Spanish, reported Spain’s pilots’ union.
This is the third flight incident involving a passenger flight in just one week. On Wednesday, a TransAsia Airways flight carrying 58 crash-landed, killing 48 and injuring 10. Meanwhile, last week a Malaysian Airlines passenger flight crashed over eastern Ukraine after allegedly being shot down, killing all 298 on board.