Plane crashes in Karachi, 20 on board (Second Lead)

November 5th, 2010 - 10:59 am ICT by IANS  

Islamabad, Nov 5 (IANS) A private plane with 20 people on board, most of them employees of a US oil company, crashed a few minutes after taking off near Karachi airport in southern Pakistan Friday, Geo TV reported.

The accident took place at 7.15 a.m. due to engine failure and authorities said chances of survivors were thin.

Thick smoke was emitting from the small aircraft even as firefighters tried to bring the raging flames under control, the report said. Rescue and relief operations were on.

The airplane, owned by a private company, had been chartered by a US firm working on an oil field in Karachi. Three crewmembers were also on plane.

A Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) official told Geo TV that the aircraft was carrying company employees to an oil field at Bhit Shah in the southern province of Sindh, of which Karachi is the capital.

“It was a small plane and there were about 20 people on board. It was a privately-owned aircraft belonging to an oil company,” the official said.

“Soon after they left, they contacted the airport control tower and said there was a problem in one of the engines. The plane was directed to return and soon after it crashed,” he said.

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