Ethiopian Airlines flight carrying 149 passengers crashes

Tuesday, 12 Mar, 2019

"Ethiopian Airlines Group expresses its profound sorrow and deepest condolences to the families of the victims and their loved ones on the tragic plane accident", Ethiopian Airlines said in a statement.

The flight ET 302/10 March was on a scheduled service from Addis Ababa in Ethiopia to Nairobi, Kenya.

State-owned Ethiopian Airline, Africa's largest carrier, had taken delivery of the Boeing 737-800 MAX plane only on November 15.

After Sunday's crash, passengers booked on Southwest and American airlines, both US-based companies that fly the Boeing model, began asking questions on Twitter about the safety of their upcoming flights.

Flight ET 302, went down near Bishoftu, southeast of Addis Ababa, after departing Bole International Airport in the Ethiopian capital, the airline posted on Twitter.

China ordered domestic airlines to suspend commercial operation of the Boeing 737 MAX 8 citing the Ethiopian Airlines crash and another deadly accident of that same model in Indonesia.

"It is confirmed it happened 8.44am (local time)", the spokesman said.

Records show that the Ethiopian Airlines passenger plane that crashed was a new one.

Boeing says it is not issuing new guidance to airlines about its 737 Max 8 aircraft after a second fatal crash on Sunday. Lion Air has bought 14 aircraft of the Boeing 737 MAX series in total, including the one that crashed in late October.

A photo released by Ethiopian Airlines showed the airline's chief executive officer inspecting the wreckage in a huge trench created by the crash.

Ethiopian Airlines said the plane had flown from Johannesburg to Addis Ababa earlier Sunday morning and "underwent a rigorous first check maintenance" last month.