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49 killed in U.S. aircrash; 1 known survivor
Latest Updated by 2006-08-28 08:11:46
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A Comair flight carrying 50 people crashed near Lexington's airport, Kentucky, Sunday morning, killing 49 on board, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said.

Comair President Don Bornhorst told a press conference that there is only one survivor among the 50 people on board Comair Flight 5191, a CRJ-100 regional jet which crashed shortly after taking off.

He would not confirm news reports that the survivor is a pilot of the plane.

Don said the company has been conducting routine maintenance for the plane and the latest time was Monday.

The CNN television earlier said at least one survivor was being treated in the University of Kentucky Hospital, and is in critical conditions.

Red Cross staffs and local police officers have arrived in the scene. Investigators from the FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board are going there, too.

A temporary morgue is being set up at the scene and the bodies will be brought to Kentucky state medical examiner's office.

Local coroners said the deaths were caused either by the impactor fire on board.

The plane was leaving Blue Grass Airport in Lexington and was heading for Atlanta, when it went down in woods about 1.6 kilometers from the airport at about 6:07 a.m. local time (1007 GMT). It was raining lightly at the time.

Bornhorst said the airline is patching up all the information about the crash but it needs time to get the complete picture.

He said Delta, the parent company of Comair, has set up an information phone line for relatives of those aboard the crashed plane.

Comair, a regional carrier based in Cincinnati, is a unit of Delta Air Lines Inc.

The airport closed for three hours after the crash, but reopened by 9 a.m (1300 GMT).

There was no immediate word on what caused the crash. The planewas largely intact afterward, but there was a fire following the impact.

Some experts said the crash could be engine-related.

Latest news reports said flight recorders have been found.

The Bombardier Canadair CRJ-100 is a twin-engine aircraft that can carry up to 50 passengers.

The crash spells the end of what has been called the "safest period in aviation history" of the United States, since there has not been a major crash since Nov. 12, 2001, when American Airlines Flight 587 plunged into a residential neighborhood in Queens, N.Y., killing 265 people.

Editor: Yan

By: Source: China View website
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