|Focker 100 crash on Burma|
Two people died when a plane packed with Christmas tourists crash-landed on a road in central Burma today.A Briton was one of four foreigners among the 11 injured.
The two people killed were an 11-year-old passenger, believed to be a Burmese citizen, and a man riding a motorcycle on the road where the plane came down.
The Air Bagan flight was carrying 63 passengers, including 51 foreigners, and six crew members from the city of Mandalay to Heho airport in Shan State, the gateway to popular tourist destination Inle Lake.The airline identified the injured tourists as a British national, two Americans and a Korean. It described the incident as an “emergency landing”.Authorities gave a more dramatic account, saying the pilot mistook the road for a runway due to bad weather.
State television reported: “While descending, the plane mistakenly landed … due to fog beside the runway.”It said the aircraft made a hard landing on a road and then came to a stop in a nearby rice paddy field.“The rear end of the plane broke and caught fire,” state TV said.
Rescuers brought the fire under control about 45 minutes later.Witnesses said smoke filled the plane when it hit the ground and was still rising from the plane’s badly-charred wreckage hours later.
Airport officials in Heho said injured passengers were taken to a hospital in the nearby city of Taunggyi for treatment.
Air Bagan is one of five private airlines that fly domestic routes in Burma, also known as Myanmar.