An Ethiopian Airlines flight travelling to Kenya crashed this morning (Sunday) just six minutes after take off. The plane had taken off from Addis Ababa at 8.38am local time and was travelling to Nairobi, Kenya. Those killed in the crash are of 33 nationalities, including Kenyans, Ethiopians, British, French, Americans and Canadians.
State-run Ethiopian Broadcasting Corporation said: “There are no survivors onboard the flight, which carried passengers from 33 countries.”
Passengers onboard included seven Britons according to the airline.
The Ethiopian prime minister’s office sent condolences via Twitter to the families of those lost in the crash.
The tweet read: “The office of the PM, on behalf of government and people of Ethiopia, would like to express it’s deepest condolences to the families that have lost their loved ones on Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737 on regular scheduled flight to Nairobi, Kenya this morning.“
Read More: Ethiopian Airlines plane crash: Disaster on flight to Kenya
What was the cause of the crash?
According to the airline’s CEO Tewolde Gebremariam, the Ethiopian Airlines pilot reported difficulties and asked for permission to turn back.
Mr Gebremariam added that the pilot previously had an “excellent flying record”.
He also said that the plane had arrived on Sunday morning from South Africa.
“[The] plane had more than three hours of ground time after coming from South Africa, it arrived with no remark and was dispatched with no remark.”
The US National Transportation Safety Board will send four people to assist in the fatal Ethiopian Airlines crash, an NTSB spokesman said today.
Reports suggest the flight ET302 “had unstable vertical speed”, or the rate of climb, after take off.
Swedish-based flight tracking website flightradar24 tweeted: “Data from Flightradar24 ADS-B network show that vertical speed was unstable after take off.”
The cause of the crash and reported difficulties has not yet been revealed.
Aeroplane maker Boeing has said that it is “deeply saddened” to learn of the death of all the passengers and crew on its 737 MAX aeroplane.
It added: “We extend our heartfelt sympathies to the families and loved ones of the passengers and crew on board and stand ready to support the Ethiopian Airlines team.
“A Boeing technical team is prepared to provide technical assistance at the request and under the direction of the US National Transportation Safety Board.”
According to Ethiopian Airlines 32 passengers were Kenyan, 18 from Canada, nine Ethiopian, eight Chinese, eight Italian, eight from the US, seven British, seven from France, six from Egypt, five from the Netherlands.
There were four with UN passport, four Indian, three Russian, two Moroccan, two Israeli, one Belgian, one Ugandan, one Yemeni, one Sudanese, one from Togo, one Mozambican and one Norwegian.
This is a developing story, more to follow.