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Jun 04, 2012, 03.55 PM IST | Source: PTI

Fears of heavy ground casualties in Nigeria plane crash

Fears of heavy ground casualties in Nigeria plane crash

From Paul Ohia Lagos, Jun 4 (PTI) Fears mounted in Nigeria today that a large number of people may have been killed on the ground besides all 153 passengers and crew on board an airliner which crashed and burst into flames after hitting buildings near the airport here. Cranes were clearing the still-flaming debris to allow rescue workers better access to the densely populated crash area. Nigerian Civil Aviation officers who are leading rescue efforts said that they fear that a large number of people may have been killed on the ground as the ill-fated aircraft of Dana Air, owned and managed by an Indian company, crashed in a heavily populated area. "62 bodies have been recovered so far," rescue officials said as smoke continued to rise from the crash site as fire-tenders and water trucks were attempting to douse the smoldering wreckage. The Dana Air Boeing MD-83 was flying to Lagos from the capital Abuja when it crashed near the airport, damaging buildings and setting off an inferno. Officials confirmed that there were no survivors found from the plane though search operation continued. The plane crashed in an area containing what the residents said was a church, a printing shop and a two storey residential building. Crowds of residents surrounded the crash site, delaying emergency services from searching for survivors. For hours, the area around the crash site was not cordoned off as the mass of people packed the area. The fires made it difficult for people to see what was happening, as well as to breathe. (more)

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