Investigative teams and news crews are scrambling, as news of a very large and fatal airplane crash has rocked the nation of Ethiopia, and left many distraught across the world. The crash has proven fatal, killing a total of 157 people, as detailed below, and sparking expressions of regret and condolences from Ethiopia’s government. More details will be added to this report as the story unfolds.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. The Ethiopian Airlines Flight Carried 149 Passengers & 8 Crew Members
The Ethiopian Airlines flight crashed on its way to Nairobi, Kenya. The Ethiopian prime minister’s office made an announcement Sunday about the crash.
The flight number is Flight ET 302. The plane was a Boeing 737-800MAX, registration number ET-AVJ.
All 157 people: the 149 passengers and eight crew members, have died.
The plane crashed shortly before 9 a.m. (local time), according to a spokesperson.
2. The Ethiopian Airlines Flight Crashed Six Minutes After Taking Off
The Ethiopian Airlines flight was only six minutes into the air when it crashed. The flight departed from Ethiopia’s Bole International airport.
Bole International airport is located in the capital city of Addis Ababa. The flight left at 8:38 a.m. local time.
Reports are saying that the plane lost contact with the control tower just a few minutes after, around 8:44 a.m.
The flight crashed in a nearby Ethiopian town called Bishoftu, which is roughly 50 kilometres south of the capital Addis Ababa.
3. All 157 People Who Were on the Flight Have Lost Their Lives
Initially, the airline released a statement saying the following. “Search and rescue operations are in progress and we have no confirmed information about survivors or any possible casualties,” the airline said in its statement.
“Ethiopian Airlines staff will be sent to the accident scene and will do everything possible to assist the emergency services,” the airline said.
Unfortunately, the tallies, search, and rescue operations have been completed. There are no survivors from the flight. All passengers and crew members have been declared dead.
Services from Ethiopian Airlines have been offered. The airline sent its staff to the accident scene to “do everything possible to assist the emergency services.”
With news that there have been “no survivors” on the flight, Ethiopian Airlines has also now set up a passenger information center and a dedicated telephone number for family and friends of people who may have been on the flight, according to reports.
Phone numbers related to the crash are posted below:
Below are phone numbers for information, the airlines posted:
Airport emergency hotline
011 5 17 87 33
0115 17 47 35
For all information necessary
011 5 17 89 45
011 5 17 89 87
011 5 17 82 31
011 5 17 85 58
4. Ethiopian Airlines Was Known as One of the Best in Africa, Rarely Involved in News of Crashes
Ethiopia Airlines has a good safety record, as reports show. It even has some of the newest fleet of planes on the African continent, according to its website. The airline company had gained a track record of being one of the best airlines in Africa.
Ethiopian Airlines is state-owned.
Ethiopian Airlines has labeled itself as Africa’s largest carrier: it maintains its mission to become a “gateway” to many of the countries on the African continent.
The last time a major accident was reported from Ethiopian Airlines was in 2010. Back then, a passenger plane, which was identified as a Boeing 737-800, exploded after taking off from Lebanon. That flight killed 83 passengers and seven crew members. The flight, which had been leaving from Beirut, also went down, shortly after its takeoff.
The last recorded “highest number of fatalities” on Ethiopian Airlines, prior to this latest crash, came in November 1996. The airline had crashed because of a hijacking incident on a flight from Addis Ababa to Nairobi. One of the plane’s engines ran out of fuel, although its pilots attempted to land on water urgently. The plane hit a coral reef in the Indian Ocean and 123 of the 175 people on board were killed that year.
The country’s prime minister, Abiy Ahmed, is known as a reformist. In the aviation sector of his country, he had vowed to open up Ethiopian airlines foreign investment, in order to birth a major transformation of the nation’s state-centric economy. Ahmed had targeted other sectors of the country’s economy for foreign investment as well.
5. The Ethiopian Airlines Flight Had Been Headed to Kenya
The Office of the PM, on behalf of the Government and people of Ethiopia, would like to express it’s deepest condolences to the families of those that have lost their loved ones on Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737 on regular scheduled flight to Nairobi, Kenya this morning.
The Ethiopian Airlines flight had been headed to Nairobi, Kenya this morning.
The prime minister, Ahmed, sent a message from his official account, with his office tweeting the above.