TransAsia flight 235 crashed in Taipei, Taiwan, earlier today. At least 16 people survived the crash of Flight GE235 and were taken to hospitals for treatment, according to the Taipei City Fire Department, with the current death-toll at 21, and two occupants of the plane still unaccounted for. The aircraft’s cockpit-voice recorder and flight-data recorder have been recovered for analysis.
At 10:55am (local time), the scheduled flight took off in the morning from Sungshan domestic airport in down-town Taipei on an hour-long flight to the island of Kinmen off mainland China. The ATR 72-600 aircraft, a twin-engine turbo-propeller model carrying 53 passengers and five crew, lost contact with air traffic control. The aircraft’s fuselage landed in the Keelung River near the city’s Sungshan airport.
Footage taken from a dashboard-mounted camera in a car showed the plane in what appears to be a deep stall. The the plane’s wings then tilt at a steep angle as it entered an incipient spin, eventually clipping a taxi with port wing-tip before barrelling into the motorway crash guard and finally plunging into the Keelung River. Two people in the taxi suffered injuries, the city government said. Two tour groups from mainland China with 31 members were aboard the plane.
Last July saw 48 people die when a TransAsia Airways flight crashed in Taiwan’s Penghu archipelago. That plane went down after the pilots couldn’t find the runway seconds before their aircraft slammed down on the island, according to the accident report. Ten people survived that crash, which was also an ATR 72 twin-engine turbo-propeller aircraft.
Including today’s crash, TransAsia’s ATR 72 planes were involved in four accidents over the last two decades that killed 73 people, according to AviationSafetyNetwork, which tracks accident data.