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Tragedy strikes Parañaque shanties?

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Tragedy struck a shantytown in Parañaque City Saturday three weeks before Christmas Day when a light plane crashed and killed 13 people, including a pilot and his co-pilot.

Residents were getting ready for a nice Christmas celebration when the unexpected happened. Men, women and children fled from the scene when they saw the light plane coming down on them.

In the next seconds, a loud crash and a “boom” followed by a fireball was all the residents could see. It was a horrifying scene from the Manila Airport Tower and nearby areas.

Reports reaching the Philippine National Police (PNP) headquarters said a Queen Airplane (RPC-824), owned by Aviation Technology Innovations (ATI) Company, crashed in a depressed residential area along Lower Taiwan Street, Barangay Don Bosco at 2:25 p.m.

PNP spokesman Chief Supt. Agrimero Cruz told the Philippines News Agency (PNA) that the light plane was supposedly bound for San Jose, Mindoro when the incident happened. He said witnesses saw the plane burst into flames on impact, spreading fire around the crash site.

At least 50 houses were leveled to the ground.

The PNP official said the accident was under investigation. The victims remained unidentified as their charred bodies were beyond recognition.

Firefighters from the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) and Text Fire Philippines (TFP) responded to the scene. Philippine Red Cross (PRC) Emergency Rescue Units (ERUs) also gave medical assistance to survivors.

Cruz said the victims died in the fire that happened after the crash which also damaged a schoobuilding of the F. Serrano Elementary School. He said there were no classes when the crash happened.

PRC secretary general Gwen Pang said in a text message to PNA that its pilot requested an emergency landing shortly after take-off.

Pang reported casualties included 10 adults and one child. She said retrieval operation is now ongoing.

By Joel C. Atencio




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