5 killed as light aircraft crashes in Kenya

Wednesday February 13 2019

Londiani crash

The wreck of the ill-fated plane that crashed in Londiani on February 13, 2019. PHOTO | COURTESY 

DAILY NATION
By DAILY NATION
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A light aircraft has crashed near Makutano Forest in Londiani, Kericho County in the west of the Kenyan Rift Valley, killing all passengers on board.

Kenya National Police Airwing Commander Rodgers Mbithi on Wednesday confirmed to the Nation that all the five occupants of the Cessna 206-5Y BSE had perished.

They include a man and two women, who are Americans, a Kenyan pilot and another passenger of unknown nationality.

Witnesses saw the plane clip a tree as it attempted an emergency landing and crashed in a field on Masaita Forest View Village.

“The plane clipped the tree and the rear wheels came off,” said farm worker Joseph Ng’ethe. “It then careened and crashed into another tree in front and into the ground.”

Police inspect the wreck of the ill-fated plane
Police inspect the wreck of the ill-fated plane that crashed in Londiani on February 13, 2019. PHOTO | COURTESY

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The Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA) said it received a distress signal from the plane, which was flying from Ol Kiombo in the Maasai Mara wildlife reserve to Lodwar in the northern county of Turkana when it crashed.

Rift Valley Police Commander Edward Mwamburi said police and rescue teams rushed to the scene.

KCAA said it had started investigations.

Witnesses said the plane was making odd sounds as it approached the field. The pilot gestured at farm workers on the ground below to move away before the rear hit a tree, they said.

The plane was operated by Safari Link, Londiani Deputy County Commissioner Justus Munyao told the Nation.

*Story updated.

-Additional reporting by Reuters.

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