A passenger plane with 49 people on board has crashed into Lake Victoria in Tanzania today while attempting to land at an airport.
Reuters reported that 15 people had been rescued from the Precision Air plane.
State-owned Tanzania Broadcasting Corporation (TBC) reported that the plane departed from the capital, Dar es Salaam before plunging into the Lake Victoria “this morning due to storm and heavy rains”.
Video footage shared on social media shows the plane almost fully submerged in the lake and surrounded by several rescue boats.
Speaking to Al Jazeera from Dar Es Salaam, Faraji Saidi, a journalist, emergency services were continuing with rescue efforts.
“According to the police commander in Bukoba, the plane crashed due to bad weather, fog. It is raining around that area. Rescue efforts are still ongoing. According to preliminary report, the plane crashed about 100m from the airport. The airline has worked in Tanzania for so long and has had no crashes,” Saidi said.
President Samia Suluhu Hassan said on Twitter that she has received the reports of the plane crash.
“I have received with sadness the news of the plane crash involving Precision Air. I send my condolences to all those affected by this accident,” she tweeted. “Let’s continue to be calm while the rescue operation continues while we ask Allah to help us,”
Bukoba Airport, where the plane wanted to land, lies on the shores of Lake Victoria, Africa’s largest lake.
Precision Air is Tanzania’s largest privately owned airline.
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