Plane carrying coronavirus supplies crashes, killing eight
London, March 30, 2020 (AltAfrica)-A plane believed to be conveying coronavirus medical supplies has exploded in a ball of flames during take-off in the Philippine capital, killing all eight passengers and crew on board, officials say.
The Lion Air plane was bound from Manila to Haneda, Japan, and burst into flames at the end of the runway about 8pm local time, Manila’s main airport said.
It had reportedly been chartered by the government and was carrying emergency supplies to the country as it battles against the spread of coronavirus.
Video footage showed a huge plume of smoke rising into the night sky as fire crews doused the fuselage with foam.
The twin-jet West Wind 24 was carrying three medical personnel, three flight crew, a patient and a companion, Richard Gordon, a senator and head of the Philippine Red Cross, said on Twitter.
“Unfortunately, no passenger survived the accident,” the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) said in a statement.
An investigation by the Civil Aeronautics Authority of the Philippines was under way, MIAA said.
Cases of coronavirus in Japan, where the plane was destined, have spiked in the last few days as the government held off placing the country on lockdown.
Tokyo governor, Yuriko Koike, had warned that the capital was entering “an important phase in preventing an explosive rise in the number of infections.”
He asked the 14 million people living in the city to stay at home over the weeken