A TransAsia Airways plane with 53 people on board crashed in a river in Taipei, Taiwan, on Wednesday (local time) shortly after takeoff, killing at least 19 people.
The small aircraft, which was flying from Taipei to Kinmen, clipped a highway bridge about 3 minutes after takeoff sending the plane plunging into the urban river. Fifteen people were rescued and another 24 are missing, officials said.
UPDATE: Officials say 23 are confirmed dead and 20 more are missing.
ATC recordings show that the crew made a mayday call, reporting an engine flame out (23:25 – in Mandarin).
Photos uploaded on social media showed the plane submerged in water.
“Actually this aircraft in the accident was the newest model. It hadn’t been used for even a year, TransAsia director Peter Chen told a news conference.
— Jackson Board (@JackBoard) February 4, 2015
— 卯金刀 (@Missxoxo168) February 4, 2015
A TransAsia Airways ATR72-600, B22816, ditched in Keelung River after takeoff from Taipei Song Shan on 04FEB15 pic.twitter.com/QSfGGhbhvL
— airlineroute (@airlineroute) February 4, 2015
— Breaking911 (@Breaking911) February 4, 2015
— Nick Dimichino (@ndimichino) February 4, 2015
The last time an TransAsia Airways had a fatal accident was six months ago when another TransAsia ATR-72, flight 222, crashed killing 47 of the 58 people on board. And in 2002, an ATR 72-200 cargo plane from Taipei to Macau crashed because of ice conditions. Both pilots were killed.
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