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Nigerian Jet Crash Kills at Least 103

Posted by By ONYEMA GODWIN, Associated Press Writer on 2005/12/10 | Views: 413 |

Nigerian Jet Crash Kills at Least 103


A Nigerian jetliner carrying 110 people, most of them schoolchildren, crashed in stormy weather Saturday while landing in this delta oil port, and at least 103 people were killed, officials said.

A Nigerian jetliner carrying 110 people, most of them schoolchildren, crashed in stormy weather Saturday while landing in this delta oil port, and at least 103 people were killed, officials said.

Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority spokesman Sam Adurogboye said early reports indicated that seven people survived the crash of the Sosoliso Airlines' McDonnell Douglas DC-9, which left the capital, Abuja.

"They were breathing and were taken to the hospital. They are responding to treatment," he said.

He did not say if the survivors were passengers or crew members.

An airport worker said burned bodies lay across the landing area after the plane broke into pieces.

"The place where I'm standing now is scattered with corpses," the worker said on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

Frantic family members at the airport said the plane was carrying 75 pupils heading home for the Christmas holidays.

Adurogboye said there was stormy weather around the airport at the time of the crash and witnesses said they saw lightning flashes as the plane approached the runway.

Saturday's crash was the second Nigeria airplane accident in seven weeks raising questions about air safety in Africa's most-populous nation of 130 million people.

Nigerian-owned Sosoliso Airlines was established in 1994. It began scheduled flights as a domestic airline in July 2000 and now flies to six Nigerian cities, according to its Web site.

Nigerian airports have come under criticism in recent months following a string of near-misses and an incident in which an Air France passenger jet crashed into a herd of cows on the runway at Port Harcourt.

International airlines also briefly suspended flights at Lagos' international airport because of holes in the runway.

In October, an Abuja-bound Boeing 737-200 crashed after taking off from the airport at Lagos, Nigeria's biggest city, killing 117 people on board the Bellview Airlines flight.

The cause of that crash is unknown, but U.S. investigators sent to help with the investigation ruled out terrorism, an official at Nigeria's Aviation Ministry said last month.

After the October crash, President Olusegun Obasanjo ordered stricter safety and maintenance procedures for all Nigerian aircraft, directing the aviation ministry to "plug loopholes" to ensure passenger safety.

In May 2002, a domestic EAS Airlines jet plowed into a heavily populated neighborhood after takeoff at the airport outside the northern city of Kano, killing 154 people in the plane and on the ground.

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On the Net:

Sosoliso Airlines: http://www.sosolisoairline.com

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Comments (3)

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Okfold(Sobe, Edo, Nigeria)says...

I want the meaning of female owan name Ekeke (Edo state)

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Toluwalase Samuel Olufemi(Ijebu, Ogun, Nigeria)says...

Authority belongs to God, once He decrees it is final and binding

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Ikponmwosa Osamede(Edo, Nigeria)says...

Your meaning of Osamede is wrong. Osamede means God has given me a crown