A China Eastern Boeing 737-800 with 132 people on board crashed in the southern province of Guangxi on Monday, officials said. The Civil Aviation Administration of China said the crash occurred near the city of Wuzhou in Teng county, per the AP. The flight was traveling from Kunming in the western province of Yunnan to the industrial center of Guangzhou along the east coast. There was no immediate word on numbers of dead and injured. The plane was carrying 123 passengers and nine crew members, the CAAC said. Satellite data from NASA showed a massive fire just in the area of where the plane went down at the time of the crash.
Chinese President Xi Jinping called for an “all-out effort” to be made in the rescue operation, for post-crash arrangements to be handled appropriately and potential safety hazards investigated to ensure complete civil aviation flight safety. People’s Daily reports that 117 rescuers have already arrived at the crash site. Guangxi fire department is organizing 650 rescuers who are heading to the site from three directions. Shanghai-based China Eastern is one of China’s top three airlines, operating scores of domestic and international routes serving 248 destinations.
The flight that crashed appeared to be Flight No. MU5735 from Kunming to Guangzhou, according to data from flight-tracking website FlightRadar24. It showed the Boeing 737-89P rapidly lost speed after 0620 GMT before entering a sharp descent. The plane stopped transmitting data just southwest of the Chinese city of Wuzhou. The aircraft was delivered to China Eastern from Boeing in June 2015 and had been flying for more than six years. The twin-engine, single aisle Boeing 737 is one of the world’s most popular planes for short- and medium-haul flights.
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