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Harsh weather in Brazil’s Amazon leads to tragic plane crash; Fourteen dead

Posted: Sunday, September 17, 2023. 11:24 am CST.

By Horace Palacio: A tragic plane crash amidst inclement weather in Brazil’s northern Amazonas state claimed 14 lives on Saturday. As per reports, heavy rainfall and limited visibility might have led the pilot to misjudge the landing route, resulting in the unfortunate incident. Al Jazeera has reported the aircraft, approaching the tourist town of Barcelos, appeared to commence landing halfway through the runway, leading to the crash.

The aftermath was a heart-wrenching sight as media outlets displayed the white jet, belly-down on a dirt pathway, with its front demolished into the thick foliage.

Vinicius Almeida, Amazonas state security secretary, during a press briefing, detailed the apparent cause of the mishap, pointing out the premature landing attempt by the aircraft in such harsh conditions.

Amazonas state’s governor, Wilson Lima, took to X (previously Twitter) to share his grief. “I deeply regret the death of the 12 passengers and two crew members,” he said. He further extended his condolences and prayers to the bereaved families, confirming that all victims were Brazilian tourists.

The governor’s discussion with the O Globo newspaper also shed light on the region’s weather challenges, highlighting the probable misjudgment during the landing as the crash’s primary cause.

The aircraft’s operating company, Manaus Aerotaxi, acknowledged the crash. While they remained tight-lipped on specific details, their statement emphasized respect for the victims’ privacy during these trying times. They assured transparency and regular updates as the investigation unfolds.

The Brazilian Air Force has engaged investigators to discern the exact reasons behind the crash of the Embraer Bandeirante, registered as PT-SOG.

Barcelos, nestling on the Rio Negro’s banks, is renowned for its proximity to numerous national parks and other conservation areas. The locale is particularly bustling now, marking the fishing peak season, with visitors thronging to catch exotic river species.

Amazonas, blanketed primarily by thick rainforests, is a sought-after spot for adventure aficionados, drawing hundreds of thousands annually, as per Amazonastur, the official state tourism agency.

 

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