Jordan-bound cargo aircraft operated by Ukrainian airline crashes in Greece

PALAIOCHORI, Greece — An Antonov cargo aircraft operated by a Ukrainian airline crashed Saturday close to town of Kavala in northern Greece, authorities mentioned. Native residents reported seeing a fireball and listening to explosions for 2 hours after the crash.

Greek Civil Aviation authorities mentioned the flight was heading from Serbia to Jordan. The An-12, a Soviet-built turboprop plane, was operated by cargo service Meridian.

Greek media reported there have been eight folks on the aircraft and that it was carrying 12 tons of “harmful supplies,” principally explosives. However native officers mentioned they’d no particular info on the cargo and offered various numbers of individuals on board.

As a precaution due to a robust scent emanating from the crash website, a coordinating committee made up of municipal, police and hearth service officers instructed inhabitants of the 2 localities closest to the crash website to maintain their home windows shut all night time, to not go away their properties and to put on masks. Authorities say they have no idea if there have been harmful chemical compounds on the aircraft, together with these contained in batteries.

Greece’s Civil Aviation authority mentioned the pilot managed to alert authorities about an issue in one of many aircraft’s engines and he was given the selection of touchdown in both the Thessaloniki or Kavala airports, and he opted for Kavala, which was nearer, saying that he needed to make an emergency touchdown.

Communication with the aircraft ceased nearly instantly afterwards. The aircraft crashed about 25 miles west of the airport.

“We have been listening to explosions till a couple of minutes in the past,” Filippos Anastassiadis, mayor of the municipality of Paggaio, instructed the Related Press a bit of over an hour after the accident. “I’m about 300 meters from the positioning of the crash.”

Considered one of Anastassiadis’ deputies instructed state broadcaster ERT that explosions have been heard for 2 hours following the crash.

Locals reported seeing a fireball and a plume of smoke earlier than the crash.

ERT reported that military and explosive consultants have been en path to the positioning, positioned on farmland shut to 2 villages which might be a part of the Paggaio municipality. However they don’t seem to be anticipated to begin working earlier than daybreak. Specialists from Greece’s Atomic Vitality Fee will be a part of them.

The fireplace service has cordoned off the world at a radius of about 400 meters. The cordoned-off space will probably be expanded at daybreak, hearth service officers mentioned.