Residents living near the site of a plane crash in Cuba tell The Associated Press they saw at least some survivors being taken away in ambulances after an airliner with people on board plummeted after takeoff from Havana's international airport.
A military officer who declined to provide his name to reporters says there appear to have been three survivors in critical condition from the Cubana flight. Other officials have declined to confirm that. The heavily damaged and burnt plane is lying in a field of yuca-root plants.
The plane was rented by Cubana, and an employee of a small Mexican charter firm says the aircraft belongs to the company. Cuba's state-run airline is notorious for its frequent delays and cancellations. An employee of a small Mexican charter firm says the passenger jet that crashed near the Havana airport belongs to the company and that six Mexican crew members were operating it. An employee who answered the phone at the Mexico City office of Global Air said he had no information on the crew or the more than passengers of various nationalities.
The employee asked not to be named as the company is still not issuing formal statements. Websites offering the firm's services say it flies to Cuba and operates several planes.
Founded in , the company operates under the legal name Aerolineas Damojh, S. A military officer tells reporters that there appears to have been only three survivors in critical condition after a Boeing crashed on takeoff from Jose Marti International Airport in Havana on Friday with passengers and nine crew aboard. The officer declined to provide his name and other officials declined to confirm the figure. The plane came to rest in a yuca field where firefighters sprayed the charred fuselage with hoses.
Officials said the plane was headed to the eastern city of Holguin when it crashed between the airport in southern Havana and the nearby town of Santiago de Las Vegas. The plane was operated by Cubana.
The state airline has taken many of its aging planes out of service in recent months due to mechanical problems. There was no immediate word on casualties. State television and websites said the plane was headed to the eastern city of Holguin and crashed between the airport in southern Havana and the nearby town of Santiago de Las Vegas. The plane lay in a farm field and appeared heavily damaged and burnt, with firefighters spraying water on its smouldering remains.
Government officials including President Miguel Diaz-Canel rushed to the site, along with a large number of emergency medical workers and ambulances. Residents of the rural area said they had seen some survivors being taken away in ambulances. The plane was rented by Cubana, which has taken many of its aging planes out of service in recent months due to mechanical problems.
Photos Rescue and search workers on the site where a Cuban airliner with passengers on board plummeted into a yuca field just after takeoff from the international airport in Havana, Cuba, Friday, May 18,