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originally posted by: Zaphod58
Plane crashes always seem to happen in threes for some reason. /quote]
That line , I've heard before . If I recall this right it once was said in ATS radio show all things survival. Everything comes in threes..
Aviation expert Pierre Condom said he believed a "brutal event" must have occurred on board for the plane to lose communication with the ground. He added that could be either "an explosion on board" or a "purely accidental event, such as loss of a piece of structure, for example."
The wreckage of Air Algérie flight AH5017 from Burkina Faso to Algeria, which disappeared from radar with 116 people on board, has been discovered in Tilemsi, Mali.
The French media is quoting Zoheir Houaoui of Air Algérie as saying the plane was carrying 50 French passengers, six Algerians, one Malian, one Belgian, two from Luxembourg, five Canadians, one from Cameroon, four Germans, one Nigerian, eight Lebanese, one Romanian, 24 from Burkino Faso and six so far unidentified passengers. The six crew members – two pilots and four stewards – were all Spanish.
The flight path of the plane from Burkina Faso's capital, Ouagadougou, was not immediately clear. The city is in a nearly straight line south of Algiers, passing over Mali, where unrest continues. Rebels who have seized the northern fringe of Mali do not have weapons capable of bringing down a commercial jet at cruising altitude, a Malian official told the Guardian. "What they have is shoulder-fired weapons, and rocket-propelled grenades."
The flight had asked to change route at 1.38am because of a storm, Burkina Faso's transport authorities said. Powerful sandstorms are frequent throughout the Sahara's northern belt around this time of year. Aviation officials in Burkina said they had handed the flight to a control tower in Niger's capital, Niamey, at 1.38am, and that last contact was at about 4.30am. That contradicted an Algerian aviation official, who said the last contact was at 0155 GMT when the plane was flying over Gao, Mali.
There have been three aviation disasters in the last week: the shooting down last Thursday of the Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 over eastern Ukraine, killing all 283 passengers and 15 crew, the crashing of TransAsia Airways flight GE222 while trying to land at a Taiwanese airport on Wednesday, killing 48 and injuring 10, and the crashing today of Air Algérie flight AH5017 from Burkino Faso to Algiers, which was carrying 110 passengers and six crew members.
The aircraft was a McDonnell Douglas MD-83, registration EC-LTV, leased from Swiftair, with 110 passengers and 6 crew members on board.
The aircraft's flight route took it over Mali, and it was reported to have disappeared between Gao and Tessalit. Aviation authorities such as the FAA warn aircraft against flying over Mali due to the potential dangers that have arisen due to the Northern Mali conflict. Specific threats warned of by the FAA include anti-aircraft missiles, rockets, and rocket-propelled grenades.
French meteorologists pointed to violent storms in the area.A diplomat based in Bamako said that the North of the country had been struck by powerful thunderstorm.