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Two planes crash on same day in Tanzania national park

Author: AFP | Published: Thursday, November 30, 2023

Smoke billowing a crashed plane in a field. PHOTO | COURTESY

Two passenger planes carrying tourists crash-landed at the same airport and on the same day in a Tanzanian national park, but officials said everyone on board survived unharmed.

The incidents, both involving planes operated by domestic airline Unity Air, took place on Tuesday at Mikumi National Park, the Tanzanian park authority known as Tanapa said.

A total of 60 passengers, plus seven crew members were on the two flights, it said in separate statements.

In the first incident, an Embraer aircraft carrying 30 passengers, two pilots and one flight attendant en route from the holiday island of Zanzibar suffered a “technical problem” when it landed at the park’s Kikoboga airport, the agency said.

“Great efforts were made by the pilots of the plane as well as the officers in the compound to ensure that no harm (occurred),” it said, adding that the tourists were able to continue with their safaris in the park.

The second incident several hours later involved another Embraer plane, also carrying 30 passengers as well as two pilots and two flight attendants, that was heading to Zanzibar.

“The cause of the plane crash is still unknown,” Tanapa said.

In November last year, 19 people died when a Precision Airplane crashed into Lake Victoria in Tanzania’s worst aviation accident for decades.

Mikumi National Park is located in the east of the country and boasts a variety of wildlife including lions, giraffes, elephants and hippos.

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