Plane Crash in Algeria Leaves 257 Dead
A military airplane crashed in northern Algeria Wednesday morning, leaving at least 257 people dead, according to Algeria's Defense Ministry.
The airplane crashed near the Boufarik Air Base between the city of Algiers and the city of Blida. Reports indicate that among those killed were 247 were passengers and 10 crew members.
According to an Algerian government statement obtained by The Washington Post, most of the dead were members of the army, but the number included some family members.
The military transport aircraft was a Russian-made Ilyushin Il-76, which isn't used in any commercial capacity as a passenger aircraft. In 2003 an Il-76 crashed in Iran killing 275.
This is the deadliest plane crash since 2014 and the 16th deadliest in history. In 2014, 298 died after a Malaysian Airlines Boeing 777-200 was shot down and crashed in Ukraine.
Images show the tail of the aircraft separated from the rest of the fuselage. The aircraft is completely blackened, and video showed the aircraft on fire with smoke billowing from the crash site.
The New York Times said that 300 emergency workers are on the scene and that some of the bodies pulled form the fire had signs of "deep burns." They also said that two people survived the crash.
The plane was traveling to Bechar, a city in southwest Alergria. It first had a scheduled stop in Tindouf near Algeria's border with Western Sarhara. The cause of the crash is still under investigation.