Jul 242014

French president Francois Hollande has said there are no survivors from the Air Algerie AH5017 passenger jet crash.

Hollande said one of two flight data recorders had been recovered, after French troops reached the crash site.

The 116 passengers on the Air Algerie flight included 51 French citizens, 24 Burkinabe, eight Lebanese, four Algerians, two from Luxembourg, one Belgian, one Swiss, one Nigerian, one Cameroonian, one Ukrainian and one Romanian.

“Aviation authorities have lost contact with an Air Algerie flight en route to Algiers from Burkina Faso, raising fears of another major airline disaster,” this just in according to The Wire. “The McDonnell Douglas MD-83 aircraft was flying from Ouagadougou, the capital city of Burkina Faso, to Algeria when it disappeared from radar about 50 minutes into the flight.”

“Airline officials say the flight carried 116 passengers and seven crew members. The plane is owned by a Spanish company called Swiftair and operated by Air Algerie. If the plane went down, it is believed it could have crashed somewhere in the nation of Niger. The BCC reports that the pilot asked air traffic control in that country to change course, because of a storm,” The Wire reports.

“The path of flight AH5017 also could have taken it over the country of Mali, where al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb terrorists continue to operate, though there is no evidence of terrorism at this time, and French officials say it is unlikely that they have the weapons to bring an aircraft down from the ground.”

“This would be the third major air disaster in the last seven days, says The Wire.

Below is also chronicled seven additional crashes for a total of eight crashes in 5 months, since MH370. What has happened to our once stellar world of commercial passenger airline safety in this new world slowly grappling from the aftermath of MH17 and MH370?

“On Wednesday, a TransAsia Airways plane crashed in Taiwan killing 48 people, and one week ago today, Malaysia Air Flight 17 was shot down over Ukraine, killing 298 people. In addition, though it’s on a much smaller scale, a teenage pilot from Indiana died after crashing his plane near American Samoa this week while attempting an around-the-world flight with his father, who is still missing,” The Wire chronicles.

The Wire Latest Update: 9:18 a.m. ET: Algerian officials have confirmed that the plane crashed, though they have not revealed any information about its location. The BBC says the current best guess is that it went down near the city of Gao, in Northeastern Mali.

The Wire Latest Update: 10:37 a.m. ET: Fox News reports that French fighter jets have indeed located the wreckage in Mali, near Gao.

“A Swiftair McDonnell Douglas MD-83 on behalf of Air Algerie, registration EC-LTV performing flight AH-5017 from Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso) to Algiers (Algeria) with 110 passengers and 6 crew, was en route over Mali near Gao about 50 minutes into the flight at around 02:55 (local time) (01:55 Zulu, 9:55 pm ET), when contact with the aircraft was lost. There are no reports that the aircraft landed at an airport, that the aircraft could have reached. In the meantime the aircraft would have run out of fuel,” The Aviation Herald confirms.

“At about 12:30 Zulu (8:30 am ET) the commander of a United Nations mission in Mali reported the aircraft came down between Gao (in southern Mali near the border to Burkina Faso) and Tessalit (in northern Mali near the border to Algeria). There is no word about the fate of the occupants.”

The French Air Force have dispatched two Mirage 2000 to search for the aircraft in the area between Gao and Tessalit.

Swiftair and Air Algerie confirmed they have lost contact to the aircraft at about 3:00 (local time) (2:00 Zulu, 10:00 pm ET).

Swiftair reports, their MD-83 departed Burkina Faso at 01:17 Zulu (9:17 pm ET) with 110 passengers and 6 crew and was estimated to arrive in Algiers at 05:10 Zulu (1:10 am ET), but has not reached the destination. The airline is working to find out what happened.

Air Algerie report the last contact with flight AH-5017 took place at 01:55 Zulu (9:55 pm ET), about 50 minutes after takeoff. The airline have invoked their emergency plans.

Swiftair have set up a call center for family members of passengers: Phone number .

Al Nahar, a TV station operating out Egypt and Lebanon, had stated around noon July 24, 2014, that the aircraft flew around Mali, crossed into Niger’s airspace and crashed near Niger’s capital city Niamey.

Algeria’s Prime Minister confirmed the aircraft disappeared near Gao in Mali, about 500 kilometers south of the border between Mali and Algeria.

Transasia AT72 at Makung on July 23, 2014, impacted buildings on approach

Stormy weather trailing behind a typhoon was the likely cause of a plane crash on a Taiwanese island that killed 48 people on board and injured 10 on the plane and five on the ground, the airline said Thursday.

The small ATR-72 operated by Taiwan’s TransAsia Airways was carrying 58 passengers and crew, when it crashed while trying to land in the Penghu island chain in the Taiwan Strait between Taiwan and China late Wednesday, according to the Aviation Herald. The plane was flying from the city of Kaohsiung in southern Taiwan.

The victims included 46 Taiwanese and two French medical students who were interns in Taiwan.

Photo: Reuters. Rescue personnel survey the wreckage of TransAsia Airways flight GE222 on Taiwan’s offshore island of Penghu on July 23, 2014. A Typhoon-related storm causes crash.

The Aviation Herald confirms, a Transasia Avions de Transport Regional ATR-72-212A (500), registration B-22810 performing flight GE222 from Kaohsiung to Makung (Taiwan) with 54 passengers and 4 crew, was on final approach to Makung’s runway 02 in strong gusting winds descending through about 300 feet above ground level about 1000 meters short of the runway when the aircraft made ground contact, struck buildings and burst into flames. 11 people received injuries and were taken to hospitals, 47 occupants perished.

Taiwan’s air transport authorities reported the ATR-72-212A registration B-22810 (14 years in service) was descending through 300 feet above ground level, about 1000 meters short of the runway in the village of Xixi in the Husi Township, when the aircraft lost height at 19:06 (Taiwan local time) (11:06 Zulu, 7:06 am ET).

It further reported the captain of the flight was 60 years of age with 22,900 hours of experience, his first officer was 39 with 2,300 hours of experience.

Moreover, that the crew had decided to go around and positioned for a second approach, but contact was lost during the second attempt to land. The weather conditions for landing were suitable at 1600 meters visibility, two other aircraft had successfully landed just prior to the accident aircraft.

Emergency services said that the crew had aborted the first approach due to heavy rain reducing visibility.

The airline reported the aircraft had been delayed due to the typhoon over Taiwan. The aircraft departed but needed to perform an emergency landing near the airport at Xixi village, the injured passengers were rushed to a hospital. 54 passengers and 4 crew were on board of the aircraft.

Ground observers witnessed the aircraft had gone around one time already and was it on its second approach when it lost height and collided with buildings.

The crash came hours after Typhoon Matmo passed over Taiwan. About 200 airline flights at Taiwanese airports had been canceled earlier in the day due to rain and high winds. Taiwan’s Central Weather Bureau had warned of heavy rains Wednesday evening even after Matmo moved west into China.

“According to what we can understand so far, this was due to weather, the influence of the typhoon,” a TransAsia representative, Phoebe Lu, told The Associated Press. She said the carrier was waiting for Taiwanese authorities to complete an investigation to get confirmation.

A spokesman for Taiwan’s air regulator, the Civil Aeronautics Administration, noted the bad weather but said an investigation still was under way.

“Even though there was bad weather, whether to land or not was up to the pilots. It is confirmed that before landing, the pilots circled, but the cause is yet to be determined,” the spokesman, Lee Wan-lee, told reporters.

TransAsia Airways general manager Hsu Yi-Tsung said no effort would be spared in the rescue operation.

The airline also confirmed it would transport relatives of passengers on the flight to Magong, according to Breaking Travel News.

Low-cost carrier TransAsia Airways is based in Taipei, Taiwan.

Largely domestically focused, the airline has in recent years expanded internationally.

Photo Credit: Reuters. A relative of a passenger on board the crashed TransAsia Airways plane cries in Kaohsiung International Airport, southern Taiwan on July 23, 2014.

Two crashes in Arizona within just three hours on Sunday, July 21.

Two teenage brothers from Utah were among six people, who died in two fiery, small plane crashes in northern Arizona over the weekend, authorities said.

Daulton Whatcott, 19, was flying the single-engine Cessna that crashed just south of Interstate 15 near the Arizona-Utah border Sunday evening, USA Today reports. He and his brother, Jaxon, of Clinton, were headed to a basketball tournament in Nevada, a family spokeswoman said.

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the crash and another one farther south in Arizona that happened just hours earlier, says USA Today.

The first plane crashed around 3 p.m. Sunday, July 21 in a remote canyon near Sedona. The bodies of four people were airlifted out Monday, Yavapai County sheriff’s spokesman Dwight D’Evelyn said. Their identities haven’t been released.

Hikers reported seeing a low-flying plane go over a ridge and disappear, followed by the sound of a crash and smoke rising from the canyon, D’Evelyn said.

The Federal Aviation Administration says it is unsure of the flight plan for the single-engine Cessna. Firefighters were working Monday to extinguish the 25-acre fire sparked by the crash.

The Whatcotts’ plane crashed on Sunday, July 21 about 6:30 p.m. local time, coming to rest on ledge south of the Virgin River Gorge. No one else was on board. Family spokeswoman Taunie Reynolds said Daulton was a newly licensed pilot and was taking Jaxon to a basketball tournament in Las Vegas.

Both brothers played on the basketball team at Syracuse High School, where Jaxon would have started his junior year this fall. Daulton graduated last year and was attending Utah State University.

Memorials were planned Monday and Tuesday in Davis County, Utah.

A Russian-built Buk missile shot down Malaysia Airlines flight MH17.

All contact with Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 was lost on the early morning of July 17th at 13:20 Zulu (9:20 am ET), when the transponder radar data became unreliable at 13:18 Zulu (9:18 am ET) into what was supposedly was a routine flight from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur.

MH17 was cruising along at 33,000 feet (10,000 meters) in the safest phase of flight with 298 souls aboard. Suddenly, the aircraft exploded. An advanced computerized Russian Buk-M2 SAM missile slammed into the cabin of the Boeing 777-200ER and blew the airliner right out of the sky.

Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 was shot down by a vehicle-mounted advanced computerized Russian-built Buk missile system, say defense experts.

MH17 crashed immediately over eastern Ukraine near the Russian border on Thursday, killing all 283 passengers and 15 crew on board. The Boeing 777-200ER, which was carrying 298 passengers, was on route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur when it crashed on Thursday.

Emergency workers have found 196 bodies at the site, where Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-200ER airliner operating as flight MH17 crashed on Thursday, according to the most recent reports from Breaking Travel News (BTN).

It fell between Krasni Luch in Luhansk region and Shakhtarsk in the neighboring region of Donetsk, after being reportedly hit by a missile over the rebel-held territory, says BTN

The use of an advanced computerized Russian-built Buk missle to shoot down a passenger airliner is a criminal act of liability and terror to the international flying public, all commercial airlines, and The Boeing Company.

Both sides in the Ukrainian civil conflict have accused each other of shooting down the jet with a missile, BTN said.

Skyward F50 at Nairobi on July 2, 2014, lost height after takeoff and impacted building.

A Skyward International Aviation Fokker 50, registration 5Y-CET, operating as a charter cargo flight from Nairobi (Kenya) to Mogadishu (Somalia), with 4 people and a cargo of Khat on board, was departing Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta Airport’s runway 06 around 4:00 (local time) (01:00 Zulu, 9:00 pm ET), says The Aviation Herald.

Shortly after becoming airborne the aircraft lost height, veered to the left and impacted a light pole and a small commercial building with shops near the General Service Unit Training School about 1.1 nautical miles past the end of the runway, and about 0.15 nautical miles left of the extended runway centerline, Aviation Herald reports.

All four occupants were killed in the crash, 2 women on the ground received critical injuries and were taken to a hospital.

The airport reported the aircraft crashed shortly after takeoff hitting a light pole and impacting a commercial building that was basically empty. The remains of all 4 occupants, who perished in the impact, have been recovered.

Aliansa DC3 near San Vicente on May 8, 2014, crash impacted terrain

An Aliansa Douglas DC-3, registration HK-4700 performing a flight from Villavicencio to Florencia (Colombia) with 5 people on board, was en route at 6800 feet MSL near La Macarena, Meta Province (Colombia) at about 12:45 (local time) (17:45 Zulu, 1:45 pm ET) when the aircraft disappeared, tallied The Aviation Herald.

A search was initiated. About 4 hours later the aircraft was found crashed in a forest near San Vicente del Caguan, Caqueta Province, there were no survivors. The aircraft was destroyed, says Aviation Herald,

Colombia’s Civil Aviation Authority reported the aircraft carried 5 people including crew when radio contact was lost and the aircraft disappeared near La Macarena. A search was initiated which succeeded in located the wreckage about 4 hours later.

Colombia’s Fuerza Aerea reported on May 9th that two helicopters have reached the crash site and recovered the five bodies of the occupants. Headquarters were established at San Vicente del Caguan, Maqua Province, about 45 kilometers from the crash site.

No weather data are available of the region, Aviation Herald said.

Photo Credit: Fuerza Aerea Colombiana. The remains of the aircraft seen from the air

Something catastrophic happened on board Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.

All contact with Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 was lost just 40 minutes into what was supposed to be a routine flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, China. The Boeing 777-200ER en-route was expected to make contact with Ho Chi Mihn air traffic control at the time it disappeared.

The flight was cruising at 35,000 feet in the safest phase of flight with 239 souls aboard, as something apparently mysterious perhaps catastrophic transpired. The immediate concern at this moment is locating the missing aircraft to determine what happened. Above all, the human story irrevocably tied to this mystery is how to bring closure to the grieving families for lost loved ones on-board.

In the case of the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 headed to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur, locally at 12:41 am Saturday (Friday afternoon ET), March 8, 2014, air traffic controllers in Subang, outside Kuala Lumpur, lost contact with the Boeing 777-200ER plane over the Gulf of Thailand between Malaysia and Vietnam, 90 nautical miles northeast of Kota Bharu, Malaysia. Malaysia Airlines’ Boeing 777-200ER asset was last tracked at 17:22 Zulu (1:22 pm ET local), when it disappeared from radar contact.

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