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Death toll in Tanzania plane crash rises to 19

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Tanzania’s Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa has said the death toll from Sunday’s plane crash in Lake Victoria in Tanzania has risen to 19

Recall that Precision Air flight plunged into Lake Victoria while attempting to land during stormy weather.

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The plane, which departed from the commercial capital, Dar es Salaam, crashed while attempting to land during stormy weather.

“All Tanzanians join you in mourning these 19 people … who have lost their lives,” Majaliwa told reporters in the northwestern city of Bukoba, where the plane was approaching the airport before it plunged into water.

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Regional commissioner Albert Chalamila said 43 people – including 39 passengers, two pilots and two cabin crew were on board the plane.

Local authorities and the airline earlier said that 26 survivors out of the 43 people on board flight PW 494 had been pulled to safety and taken to hospital in Bukoba, a lakeside city in the Kagera region.

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It was not immediately clear if the 19 victims included rescuers who drowned or whether the 48-seater aircraft had more people on board than previously disclosed, a regional official said.

“We are continuing to investigate,” said Chalamila. “There is a possibility that two people were not onboard but died during the rescue effort.”

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Precision Air, Tanzania’s largest privately-owned airline, said it had dispatched rescuers to the scene.

“An investigation team consisting of Precision Air technical staff and TAA (Tanzania Airports Authority) has also departed to join the rescue team on the ground,” the airline said in a statement.

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