Plane wreckage spotted and no survivors likely
GN Bureau | March 24, 2015
An Airbus plane operated by Lufthansa's Germanwings budget airline crashed in southern France on Tuesday en route from Barcelona (Spain) to Duesseldorf (Germany).
French police have confirmed that AirbusA320 passenger jet has crashed in South France near Digne with 142 passengers, 2 pilots, 4 crew members onboard.
According to French president François Hollande many of the victims were German. “The conditions of the accident, which have not yet been clarified, suggest that there might not be any survivors,” he said.
Germanwings and Lufthansa were not immediately available for a comment. Airbus had no immediate comment.
Early reports indicate that the aircraft’s radar signal was lost near Digne et Barcelonnette in south-west France.
The wreckage of the aircraft has been located by a French military helicopter near the town of Prads-Haute-Bléone.
The pilots declared an emergency at 10:47 am local time and descended rapidly to around 5,000 feet from a cruising altitude of 38,000 feet, while flying over Barcelonnette in the Alpes de Haute Provence region.
The A320 is one of Airbus’s biggest selling aircraft, with nearly 3,900 delivered and almost 7,600 ordered in total.
The single aisle, twin-engine jet typically seats about 150 passengers in a two-class cabin or 180 in high-density layouts for shorter or charter routes.
Meanwhile, shares in Lufthansa and Airbus fell sharply in Europe as news broke that an A320 passenger jet had crashed in the French Alps. The shares in pan-European plane-maker Airbus fell 4.9%, with Lufthansa dropping by 4.1%.
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