Philippine Air Force (PAF) plane with 92 people aboard crashed and burst into flames after missing the runway in the country’s south, killing at least 45 people and leaving dozens injured.
According to news agency AFP, the revised death toll includes 42 military personnel who were on board the C-130 Hercules transport plane which was trying to land on Jolo island in Sulu province around midday. Total three civilians were also killed in the crash, added the armed forces.
“It’s very unfortunate. The plane missed the runway and it was trying to regain power but failed and crashed”, General Cirilito Sobejana told reporters.
Early reports stated that around 40 people were rescued from the burning wreckage and have been transported the injured to a nearby hospital.
Citing from NPR, the three pilots who were on board the aircraft survived the crash however, were seriously injured.
A search and rescue operation is currently underway to save the remaining people on the plane.
Reacting to the development via a statement posted on Facebook, Defence Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said the plane was carrying nearly a hundred soldiers including the crew, adding that he has ordered a full investigation into the incident.
As per media reports, the majority of the passengers on the plane were recent graduates of basic military training. They were being transported for deployment to the island as part of a joint task force fighting terrorism in the Muslim-majority region.
The PAF said in an official statement that the C-130 aircraft took off from the airbase in Metro Manila to Cagayan de Oro City in northern Mindanao before heading to Jolo.