2 pilots, 1 child killed in military plane crashes

Parts of a military fighter jet that crashed in Minbu Township, Magway Region, on Oct. 16, 2018. Photo: Khit Thit Media
Parts of a military fighter jet that crashed in Minbu Township, Magway Region, on Oct. 16, 2018. Photo: Khit Thit Media

Two Tatmadaw F-7 fighter jets crashed in Minbu Township, Magway Region, this morning, killing two pilots and a 5th grade student on the ground.

“Two military planes crashed, and we are trying to organize our resources to resolve this issue. It’s very urgent. There were casualties and damage,” regional lawmaker Kyaw Swan Yi told Khit Thit Media.

At 7:25am, one plane crashed into telecom tower near Sar Puk Creek, flinging debris that severely injured a young girl who was studying nearby, at her teacher’s home. She died a few minutes later. Two other students received minor injuries.

At 7:45am, another plane crashed into chili field near Tha Nat Pin Su village. Photos on social media show parts of the plane strewn across the field.

Win Win, another regional lawmaker, told Khit Thit Media that it was difficult to understand how both planes could crash when the weather conditions were ideal for flying.

“I only saw the crash in Tha Nat Pin Su village; Kyaw Swan Yi went to the other crash near Sar Puk Creek. This plane crashed into the chili fields, and I saw the pilot’s body. The main point is that these were fighter planes. I saw bullets and weapons on the ground. The weather was good, too. I don’t know what happened between them. Maybe there was a machine defect; maybe the pilots weren’t well trained, but the weather over here was good,” the MP said.

He also said local authorities had been instructed not to move the bodies until the military arrived.

“We’ve notified the Air Force already. They told us not to touch the body. Everything is in pieces. It’s everywhere. The parts are spread over a mile.”

Military plane crashes are relatively common in Myanmar. In June 2017, 122 died when a plane carrying military personnel and their families crashed into the Andaman Sea.

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