Investigators in the Sudan are still
trying to reconcile varying witness accounts of the Tuesday night
downing of a Sudan Airways plane. The Press Association cites the
Sudan Civil Aviation Authority in reporting that 29 passengers and
crewmembers died, but 171 escaped the burning plane.
Two differing stories on what happened to the Airbus were
related by official sources.
As ANN reported, Police Chief
Mohammad Najib told officials the high winds around Khartoum
Airport at the time, "caused the plane to crash land, split into
two and catch fire."
But airport director Youssef Ibrahim told Sudanese television
the airliner had landed safely, and the pilots were talking to the
control tower to get further instructions when the accident
occurred."One of the engines exploded and the plane caught
One survivor described a rough landing, followed by a sharp
impact several minutes later.
Investigators have determined the plane skidded off the runway
and hit navigation poles marking the end of the runway, sparking a
fire on the right side of the aircraft. Passengers say an engine
burst into flames, which engulfed the cabin after an evacuation had
In a freak post-crash complication, two civil defense workers
were injured when a fuel tank was left undrained and exploded in
the summer sun.