On Monday, a China Eastern Airlines Boeing 737 carrying 132 people crashed in the hills of southern China, the country's biggest aircraft tragedy in more than a decade.
President Xi Jinping of China has ordered "all-out rescue operations" for survivors at the disaster site, with search teams dispatched. There was no information on the casualties as of Monday evening.
Mr. Xi stated that he was "shocked to learn about the incident involving China Eastern Airlines flight MU5735" and that he "ordered the immediate launch of an emergency response, all-out search and rescue efforts, and the correct settlement of the aftermath."
The plane accident on Monday was China's worst flying catastrophe in more than a decade. In 2010, a Henan Airlines Embraer was involved in a severe crash. It crashed while approaching in foggy conditions, killing 44 people.
A Tupolev aircraft crashed in 1994, killing 160 passengers. China has rebuilt its aviation sector since the 1990s. Older aircraft, such as the Tupolev, have been phased out in favour of Boeing and Airbus aircraft by China's largest airline operators, including Air China, China Southern, and China Eastern. In recent years, a considerably improved safety record has resulted from more stringent safety regulations as well as a relatively young fleet of aircraft.
The plane went down at a village in Teng County, Guangxi, near the city of Wuzhou. The fire at the crash site was extinguished by early evening, according to municipal officials, who added that the Wuzhou fire department had dispatched 117 firefighters and 23 fire engines to the scene. More than 500 firemen from throughout the province were also called in.
“Deeply shocked and saddened to learn about the crash of the passenger flight MU5735 with 132 on board in China’s Guangxi.” “Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims of the crash and their family members,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi stated on twitter.