News / Asia

Lao Plane Crash Kills 49; Bad Weather Blamed

A Lao soldier places incense sticks into the ground beside the wreckage left by a Lao Airlines turboprop plane as he pays his respects to the victims of Wednesday's ill-fated flight, in Pakse, Laos, Oct. 17, 2013.
A Lao soldier places incense sticks into the ground beside the wreckage left by a Lao Airlines turboprop plane as he pays his respects to the victims of Wednesday's ill-fated flight, in Pakse, Laos, Oct. 17, 2013.
VOA News
Lao authorities are blaming bad weather for the crash of a state-run airlines flight that killed all 49 people on board.

The Lao Airlines ATR-72 turboprop plane was flying Wednesday from the capital, Vientiane, to the southern town of Pakse when it crashed into the Mekong River.

The CEO of Lao Airline, Somphone Douangdara expressed condolences to the families of the victims during a news conference on Thursday.

“We are currently conducting search and rescue missions to recover parts of the aircraft and bodies of the victims as quickly as possible with the help of all technical experts from inside and outside the country," said Douangdara.

He added a special team from the airline is working with national and local authorities, as well as investigators from the aircraft manufacturer, to identify the cause of the accident.

The plane was new and was delivered to the airline in March.

A Lao newspaper quotes a witness as saying the plane was about to land when it was hit by a rush of strong winds and lost its balance. The pilots tried to bring the plane up, but it veered into the river.  Other witnesses say if the pilots had not tried to lift the plane up, it would have crashed into houses and a nearby army ammunition depot, which would have caused more loss of life.

A passenger manifest showed 17 Lao, seven French, five Australians, five Thais, three Koreans, two Vietnamese, and one person each from the United States, Canada, China, Malaysia and Taiwan were on board.

This report was produced in collaboration with the VOA Lao service.


  • A Laotian soldier covers the body of a plane crash victim with a sheet on the bank of the Mekong River in Pakse, Laos, Oct. 18, 2013.
  • Thai rescuers unload the body of a plane crash victim from a boat in Pakse, Laos, Oct. 18, 2013.
  • Rescue workers recover the body of a plane crash victim in the Mekong River in Pakse, Laos, Oct. 18, 2013.
  • Loatian officials unload the body of a plane crash victim upon arrival at a Chinese temple in Pakse, Laos, Oct. 18, 2013.
  • People look at the debris of a Lao Airlines turboprop plane that crashed into the Mekong River, in Pakse, Laos, Oct. 17, 2013.
  • Onlookers watch the search operation for the lost Lao Airlines plane on the banks of the Mekong River in Pakse, Laos, Oct. 17, 2013.
  • Divers search for bodies of victims of a crashed Lao Airlines plane in the Mekong River in Pakse, Laos, Oct. 17, 2013.
  • A Lao soldier places incense sticks into the ground beside the wreckage left by a Lao Airlines turboprop plane as he pays his respects to the victims of the ill-fated flight, in Pakse, Laos, Oct. 17, 2013.
  • The remains of one of the victims of the Lao Airlines plane crash lies in a Chinese temple in Pakse, Laos Oct. 17, 2013.

You May Like

Conflicts Engulf Christians in the Middle East

Research finds an increase in faith-based hostilities, and Christians are facing persecution in a growing number of countries in the region More

Iran Bolsters Surveillance of Phones, Internet

Does increased monitoring suggest the government is nervous? More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Mary from: Wi
October 18, 2013 12:49 PM
This is very sad to see, sincere condolence to the family who have lost their love ones in this tragedy.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ukraine Battles Pro-Russia Rebel Assaulti
X
Daniel Schearf
August 29, 2014 9:30 PM
After NATO concluded an emergency meeting to discuss the crisis in eastern Ukraine, the country is struggling to contain heavy fighting near the strategic port of Mariupol, on the Azov Sea. Separatist rebels are trying to capture the city, allegedly with Russian military help, and Ukraine's defense forces are digging in. VOA's Daniel Schearf spoke with analysts about what lies ahead for Ukraine.
Video

Video Ukraine Battles Pro-Russia Rebel Assault

After NATO concluded an emergency meeting to discuss the crisis in eastern Ukraine, the country is struggling to contain heavy fighting near the strategic port of Mariupol, on the Azov Sea. Separatist rebels are trying to capture the city, allegedly with Russian military help, and Ukraine's defense forces are digging in. VOA's Daniel Schearf spoke with analysts about what lies ahead for Ukraine.
Video

Video Growing Business Offers Paint with a Twist of Wine

Two New Orleans area women started a small business seven years ago with one thing in mind: to help their neighbors relieve the stress of coping with a hurricane's aftermath. Today their business, which pairs painting and a little bit of wine, has become one of the fastest growing franchises across the U.S. VOA’s June Soh met the entrepreneurs at their newest franchise location in the Washington suburbs.
Video

Video Ebola Vaccine Trials To Begin Next Week

The National Institutes of Health says it is launching early stage trials of a vaccine to prevent the Ebola virus, which has infected or killed thousands of people across West Africa. The World Health Organization says Ebola could infect more than 20,000 people across the region by the time the outbreak is over. The epidemic has health experts and governments scrambling to prevent more people from becoming infected. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Asian Bacteria Threatens Florida Orange Trees

Florida's citrus fruit industry is facing a serious threat from a bacteria carried by the Asian insect called psyllid. The widespread infestation again highlights the danger of transferring non-native species to American soil. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Aging Will Reduce Economic Growth Worldwide in Coming Decades

The world is getting older, fast. And as more people retire each year, fewer working-age people will be there to replace them. Bond rating agency Moody’s says that will lead to a decline in household savings; reducing global investments - which in turn, will lead to slower economic growth around the world. But experts say it’s not too late to mitigate the economic impact of the world’s aging populations. Mil Arcega has more.
Video

Video Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?

U.S. President Barack Obama has ruled out sending ground troops to Iraq to fight militants of the so-called Islamic State, or ISIS, despite officials in Washington describing the extremist group as the biggest threat the United States has faced in years. Henry Ridgwell reports from London on the growing uncertainty over whether the West’s response to ISIS will be enough to defeat the terrorist threat.
Video

Video Coalition to Fight Islamic State Could Reward Assad

The United States along with European and Mideast allies are considering a broader assault against Islamic State fighters who have spread from Syria into Iraq and risk further destabilizing an already troubled region. But as VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports, confronting those militants could end up helping the embattled Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Video

Video Made in America Socks Get Toehold in Online Fashion Market

Three young entrepreneurs are hoping to revolutionize the high-end sock industry by introducing all-American creations of their own. And they’re doing most of it the old-fashioned way. VOA’s Julie Taboh recently caught up with them to learn what goes into making their one-of-a-kind socks.
Video

Video Americans, Ex-Pats Send Relief Supplies to West Africa

Health organizations from around the world are sending supplies and specialists to the West African countries that are dealing with the worst Ebola outbreak in history. On a smaller scale, ordinary Americans and African expatriates living in the United States are doing the same. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
Video

Video America's Most Popular Artworks Displayed in Public Places

Public places in cities across America were turned into open-air art galleries in August. Pictures of the nation’s most popular artworks were displayed on billboards, bus shelters, subway platforms and more. The idea behind “Art Everywhere,” a collaborative campaign by five major museums is to allow more people to enjoy art and learn about the country’s culture and history. Faiza Elmasry has more.
Video

Video Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implant

A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video India’s Leprosy Battle Stymied by Continuing Stigma

Medical advancements in the treatment of leprosy have greatly diminished its impact around the world, largely eliminating the disease from most countries. India made great strides in combating leprosy, but still accounts for a majority of the world’s new cases each year, and the number of newly infected Indians is rising - more than 130,000 recorded last year. Doctors there say the problem has more to do with society than science. Shaikh Azizur Rahman reports from Kolkata.

AppleAndroid