12 Air Force personnel, one technician die in Papua plane crash
Nethy Dharma Somba
The Jakarta Post
Twelve Air Force personnel and a radar technician died in a Hercules plane crash on Sunday in Jayawijaya, Papua.
The 13 fatalities were confirmed after a joint team from the Air Force and a search and rescue group arrived at the crash site. “The plane was heavily damaged and seemed to have been razed by fire. All 13 people inside the plane died,” said Rasbuhani Umar, head of Wamena Airport, which is situated only 30 minutes from the accident location.
Wreckage is seen after an Air Force Hercules aircraft crashed on Dec. 18, killing 12 personnel and a radar technician in Wamena, Papua.(Courtesy of Wamena Airport/File)
The Hercules C-130 with flight number A-1334 Navex 32 en route from Timika to Wamena was piloted by Maj. Marlon, with 12 crew. The plane was undertaking navigation training while transporting cement and sacks of rice to people in the Tengah Mountains. The total cargo weighed 12 metric tons. Before the wreckage was found, the plane lost contact with air traffic control at 6:09 a.m. local time.
The plane took off from Moses Kilangin Airport in Timika, Mimika, at 5:35 a.m. and was scheduled to land at Wamena Airport in Jayawijaya at 6:09 a.m.
The conditions in Wamena at the time of accident were foggy with visibility of 2 kilometers. Two planes were scheduled to land in Wamena on Sunday morning but because of the low visibility, an aircraft that took off from Sentani in Jayapura decided to return to Sentani, Rasbuhani said. (evi)
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