Goma crash
Smoke raises after a small aircraft carrying around 15 passengers crashed in a densely populated area in Goma on the East of the Democratic Republic of Congo on November 24, 2019.
Image Credit: AFP

Goma: Twenty-three bodies were recovered on Sunday after a small plane crashed on takeoff into a densely populated area of Goma in the Democratic Republic of Congo, rescue workers said.

“We are up to 23 bodies now,” Goma rescue service coordinator Joseph Makundi told AFP.

Goma airport official Richard Mangolopa told AFP no survivors were expected from the disaster.

The Dornier-228 aircraft had been headed for Beni, 350 kilometres (220 miles) north of Goma when it went down in a residential area near the airport in the east of the country.

“There were 17 passengers on board and two crew members. It took off around 9-9.10 am (0700 GMT),” Busy Bee airline staff member Heritier Said Mamadou said.

Busy Bee, a recent company, has three planes serving routes in North Kivu province.

One of the company’s maintenance workers at the site quoted by news site actualite.cd blamed a “technical problem”.

The number of casualties on the ground was not yet known.

Previous plane crashes in residential areas

A recap of the main plane crashes over the last decade in densely populated zones, after a small plane crashed into an area in the city of Goma in the Democratic Republic of Congo on Sunday, killing 23 people.

– July 30, 2019: At least 18 people are killed when a small military plane crashes into a residential area in the Pakistani city of Rawalpindi, near the capital Islamabad.

– January 16, 2017: A Turkish cargo plane crashes into a village near Kyrgyzstan’s main airport, killing at least 38 people including 13 children and destroying houses after it had attempted landing in thick fog.

– June 30, 2015: An Indonesian military plane crashes shortly after takeoff and comes down in a residential area in Medan on the island of Sumatra, killing its 122 passengers and some 20 people on the ground. Several buildings are also torn apart.

– November 30, 2012: A cargo plane crashes near the Republic of Congo’s Brazzaville’s airport, killing 32 people. All seven passengers are killed after the plane skidded off the runway when it landed in stormy weather, demolishing several homes before crashing into a ravine. The other victims were on the ground.

– June 3, 2012: A devastating crash in Nigeria’s largest city Lagos kills 159 people including six people on the ground. The passenger jet came down in a neighbourhood in the north of the city after declaring a “mayday” and reporting both its engines having failed.

– March 21, 2011: A cargo plane crashes down into a residential area of Pointe-Noire, the Republic of Congo’s economic capital, killing 23 people including 14 on the ground.