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Venezuelan Interior Minister Jesse Chacon said the pilot had asked for authorisation to enter Venezuelan air space and land at Maracaibo airport because of problems with one of the engines.
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The pilot then reported that the second engine was also failing and the aircraft began to lose altitude at about 7,000 feet (2,100 metres) a minute, Mr Chacon said.
Originally posted by nikelbee
Is it me or do there seem to be more airline related incidents lately?
Witnesses say a Colombian plane that has crashed in Venezuelan mountains plummeted in a huge ball of fire before hitting the ground and exploding, killing all 160 people aboard.
The West Caribbean Airways McDonnell-Douglas MD-82 jet crashed just before dawn local time after the pilot reported engine trouble.
Most of the passengers were local government officials in Martinique who had been on holiday with their families, an official at the Fort-de-France airport in Martinique said
The MD-82 aircraft, delivered to its first operator in 1986, passed a safety check by Colombian authorities on Monday.
This is a tragedy...everyone died, both engines just switched off," Chavez said at a public event late Tuesday.
Farm workers told local television they had seen the aircraft in flames before it hit the ground.
its tail was left standing alone, according to a Reuters photographer at the site.