A NEW AIRCRAFT MISSING: Air Algerie has lost contact with a plane carrying 116 people on board!
Update: Air Algerie tweets that flight AH5017 has apparently crashed about 70 km from the city of Gao in eastern Mali.
Algerian officials have announced that the aircraft, initially thought to be an Airbus A320 but later revised to an MD-83, was carrying 110 passengers and six crew members (2 pilots and 4 cabin crew).
The MD-83 is part of the McDonnell Douglas MD-80 family of twin-engine, single-aisle aircraft.
A private Spanish company, Swiftair, operates the plane for Air Algerie. “We have lost contact with the plane,” Swiftair said.
“At this moment, emergency services and our staff are working on finding out more on this situation.”
Air navigation services have lost radar connection with Air Algérie flight today while flying from Ouagadougou to Algiers, less than an hour after departure, said also the Algeria’s national airline.
“Air Algérie informs that air navigation service made a last contact with flight AH5017 from Ouagadougou to Algiers, on the 24th July at 01.55 GMT respectively 50 minutes after takeoff,” said the airline in a statement.
The company implemented a “contingency plan,” according to the text.
On its Web site, Air Algérie informs that it provides four weekly flights to Ouagadougou, one of which takes off on Thursday from Algerian capital.