Indonesian 737 crashes

SiuDude

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JAKARTA (Reuters) - An Indonesian Boeing 737 operated by local carrier Mandala Airlines and with more than 100 people on board crashed in a populated area near the Sumatran city of Medan on Monday, Metro TV reported.
A government spokesman in Medan said the incident occurred as the plane was taking off from the city's airport, but he had no further details.

The plane was heading to Jakarta, Metro TV said.
 

GravityHater

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(is it legal to repost copyrighted news reports?)

Passenger jet crashes in Indonesia

Monday, September 5, 2005; Posted: 3:36 a.m. EDT (07:36 GMT)

An airliner crashes into a residential area just after takeoff. (3:18)

JAKARTA, Indonesia -- A passenger jet has crashed into a residential area after taking off from an airport in the Indonesian city of Medan, and scores are feared dead, officials said.

The Associated Press, citing a government spokesman, said all 117 people aboard were killed in Monday's crash.

It is unclear if any people were killed on the ground in the neighborhood where the plane came down, just 500 meters ( 546 yards) from the airport's runway.

But video from the scene showed crews battling a huge fire, with cars and structures in flames. Hundreds of policemen, paramedics and residents were trying to evacuate victims, news agencies reported.

"I arrived around 10 minutes after the accident. Burning bodies were everywhere," The Reuters news service quoted one local reporter as saying from the scene.

"Around 10 houses were burned, along with five to six minibuses. The plane was torn into pieces, we could only see the tail."

Indonesia's transport minister said the Mandala Airlines Boeing 737-200 plane took off around 10:05 a.m. (3:05 a.m. GMT) local time and crashed shortly thereafter.

"We're having a hard time getting to the bodies because of the heat," doctor Syahrial Anas told The Associated Press, adding that dozens of ambulances and firefighters were heading to the scene in heavy traffic.

The airport in Medan is close to the center of town. The plane crashed close to an artery road full of vehicles in Medan's Padang Bulan, according to Indonesia's Antara news agency.

The dead included the governor of North Sumatra province, who was heading to the capital for a meeting with the president, Antara quoted one official as saying.

Families were gathering at the airport in the capital Jakarta as well as the one in Medan, the largest city on Sumatra island and Indonesia's third most-populous urban area.

Medan is also the main gateway for aid into tsunami-hit Aceh province.

Indonesia's last crash involving a jetliner occurred in February 2005, when 26 people were killed when a plane operated by Lion Air, another low-cost carrier, skidded off the runway on Java Island, killing 26 people.

Many of the planes operated by Jakarta-based Mandala, which is partially owned by the military, are more than 10 years old, according to AP.
 
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