Old 8th Dec 2016, 07:16
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Join Date: Jul 2000
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?Faulty engine? kills 48 in Pakistan plane crash | World | The Times & The Sunday Times

An aircraft with a faulty engine crashed into mountains in Pakistan yesterday killing all 48 passengers and crew and prompting claims that engineers had not cleared it for take-off.

Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) flight PK-661 took off at 3.30pm from the northern resort town of Chitral in the foothills of the Hindu Kush. It was making its approach to Islamabad, 250 miles to the south, about an hour later, when it lost contact with ground control and disappeared from radar. It crashed about 25 miles north of the capital, near Havelian. Witnesses reported that the plane was on fire as it came down and exploded on impact...........

Officials said that the pilots of the French-built twin-turboprop ATR 42 reported problems with the left engine and declared an emergency shortly before the flight disappeared. The aircraft had suffered an in-flight failure of the same engine two years ago.

Sources at Pakistan’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) said that engineers had not cleared the plane to fly. Muhammad Irfan Elahi, CAA chairman, confirmed that one engine was known to be out of order. “I cannot reveal more information right now,” he said. “First priority is the rescue operation.”

Shahid Lateef, a retired air-marshal, said that allowing the plane to fly without clearance from engineers was criminal. “I am unable to understand how come this plane was allowed to fly in the first place,” he said. “This is a serious violation and both PIA and CAA officials will have to come up with answers.”......
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