All five crew died when a Myanmar air force plane crashed in the capital Naypyidaw yesterday, bursting into flames soon after take off and smashing into a nearby field, the military said.
One man was pulled alive from the blazing wreckage and taken to hospital but later died of his injuries, according to a rare news statement on the official Myanmar army Facebook page.
“Naypyidaw airport authorities, the fire brigade, air force personnel and local residents all worked together to extinguish the fire,” the statement said, adding the cause of the crash was under investigation.
Hundreds of people gathered in the area as officials sifted through the smouldering wreckage of the propeller plane, according to an AFP reporter at the scene earlier yesterday. The Beechcraft passenger plane took off from the Naypyidaw airfield in the mid-morning on a routine patrol, but burst into flames soon after leaving the runway, according to an airport official, who asked not to be named because the incident involved a military aircraft.
The Ministry of Information earlier published a series of pictures of the remains of the aircraft showing just one wing intact and a thick stream of smoke rising into the air.
Myanmar has a busy aviation sector, partly to compensate for the country’s poor road and rail infrastructure.
While news of military air crashes is relatively rare, there have been several incidents involving commercial planes in recent years.
In July, an Air Bagan ATR 72 twin-engine turboprop carrying 49 passengers skidded off the runway after landing during heavy rain at Yangon International Airport.
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