Ten people killed as plane crashes into bus in Ghana


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The Independent Online

Ten people have died after a cargo plane attempting to land in the Ghanaian capital Accra crashed into a bus near the airport.

Emergency workers said that all 10 people on board the bus were killed.

The crash took place near Kotoka International Airport, which sits near newly-constructed high-rise buildings, hotels and the country's defence ministry.

Witnesses said the Allied Air Cargo plane first smashed through the fence that encircles the airport before hitting the bus.

Billy Anaglate, a spokesman for the Ghana Fire Service, said that all 10 passengers in the bus were killed on impact. The plane's four crew members appear to have survived the crash and were rushed to a local hospital for treatment.

He said: "What happened is that the Allied (Air) Cargo plane ... was travelling from Nigeria to Ghana.

"At the landing it was short of the boundary, and it went off onto the roadside.

"It crashed into a bus that was bound for Accra ... (The plane) broke the barrier and went onto the road and hit the vehicle and unfortunately in the vehicle everyone ended up dying. The poor people were killed."

An official at the airport's control tower declined to comment, saying no-one was available to discuss the crash. Police officials also refused to immediately discuss the matter, although a press conference is scheduled to take place later.

Police and soldiers quickly cordoned off the neighbourhood where the plane crashed. The area is near to El-Wak Sports Stadium and Hajj Village, where Muslims in the country stay before they journey to Mecca.

Local television showed images of the plane lying across a road with its tail damaged as the flight crew jumped off and received help from emergency responders.

Witnesses said the plane was labelled as belonging to Allied Air Cargo, a fact confirmed by Mr Anaglate. The name and symbols on the aircraft matched those of the Nigerian air freight company based out of Lagos. No-one was immediately available to answer calls at the company.

Ghana, a West African nation of more than 25 million, has not had a major aeroplane crash in recent years.

The last air emergency the country had was in June 2006, when a TAAG Linhas Aereas De Angola flight to Sao Tome hit birds during take-off. The plane landed safely and none of the 28 people onboard were injured.