Many Dead in Thai Plane Crash

September 17, 2007

A passenger plane crashed while attempting to land at southern Thailand’s Phuket airport Sunday afternoon, possibly leaving some people dead and about 20 hurt, an official said. An unconfirmed television report said 60 were dead. [IJ Ed. Note: Later reports confirm the death of 89 people].

Local television station TITV reported there were 123 mostly foreign passengers on the plane, One-To-Go airlines flight OG 269 from Bangkok to Phuket.

“I believe there are people dead, but the number is still unclear,” said Chaisak Angsuwan, director general of the Air Transport Authority of Thailand. TITV reported 60 dead. Chaisak said he could not immediately confirm that. It was not clear who the station’s report was citing.

Chaisak said 20 people were seriously injured on the flight, which crashed in heavy rain. “The visibility was poor as the pilot attempted to land. He decided to make a go-around but the plane lost balance and crashed,” he said. “It was torn into two parts.”

Anchalee Wanitthepphabutr, chief of Phuket’s provincial administrative authority, said on TITV that the plane had been in flames. Anchalee said the dead and injured were being taken from the plane to several hospitals in Phuket.

Maj. Gen. Deecha Butnamphet, police chief in Phuket, said on TITV that we believe that there are many people who are dead. We are taking the dead and injured out from the scene.”

One-To-Go, a budge airline, is owned Orient Thai Airways.

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