El Sam Airlift Antonov AN-26 plane crash
The Russian-made Antonov 26 owned by El Sam Airlift, and chartered by Malift Air, was on a passenger flight from Kinshasa, Congo, and Tshikapa, Congo. The
plane crashed seconds after take off from Kinshasa.
Shortly after takeoff the nr.2 engine failed. Some reports say propeller blade(s) separated from the engine. The airplane lost height, contacted trees and crashed onto Mayulu Avenue in the Kingasani neighbourhood, striking three houses. The plane burst into flame after it crashed in this populated area. One crew member is said to have survived the accident, but the 21 other people onboard died (there have been many conflicting reports regarding the number of passengers: a figure of 19 has also been mentioned in press reports). At least 28 fatalities have been reported on the ground. Several houses have been completely destroyed by fire.
El Sam Airlift is banned from flying in Europe because of safety concerns. Ageing planes in Congo suffer from a lack of maintenance and spare parts but they are often the only way to transport people and goods across the vast central African country that is slowly recovering from a 1998-2003 civil war.