Thursday, 8 March 2007

Aussies feared dead in plane crash

Up to 10 Australians are missing in the crash of a Garuda Airlines 737-400 early this morning at Yogyakarta in Indonesia. About half of the 140 passengers managed to escape the burning aircraft, reporting that it shuddered violently before landing, ran off the end of the runway and burst into flames. Our thoughts go out to the families of those killed and injured in the accident. Updates on the Aussies when further information comes to hand. Garuda is one of the world's least reliable carriers with 18 major accidents since 1950 of which only 3 were lucky enough to have no loss of life.

Update 1: 4-5 Australians missing. One presumes they have perished in the accident.
Update 2: It appears that the aircraft was coming in way too fast, which may indicate that the crew had lost control of power shortly before landing
Update 3: 5 missing Aussies are named this morning: Australian Financial Review journalist Morgan Mellish, two Australian Federal Police officers, Brice Steele and Mark Scott, AusAID Jakarta official Allison Sudrajat, and Jakarta embassy spokeswoman Liz O'Neill.
Update 4: All of those named above except Liz O'Neill have been formally identified. What a shocking thing. The pilot survived and is apparently under suicide watch. He said that the plane hit a sudden down gust, came in too quickly, bounced back into the air, came down again, lost its engines and ran off the end of the runway. The black box recorders are on their way to Canberra for analysis.
Update 5: All five Australians formally identified.

Here's Garuda's Boeing 737-479 (reg: PK-GZC) in better times.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What??!! You can actually tell it was an airliner! You mean the plane didn't disintegrate into tiny pieces no bigger than a human hand when it hit the ground?? Oh, I guess that only happens on 9/11.