Plane Crashes In Cuba Shortly After Take Off

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A fireball was seen in Cuba in a rural area after a plane Boeing 737 operated by Cubana de Aviacion crashed shortly after taking off Friday from Havana’s Jose Marti airport, state media reported.

104 passengers were on board. Airport sources said the jetliner was heading from the capital to the eastern city of Holguin.

Witnesses told AFP a thick column of smoke could be seen rising above the crash site.

Cuban state media has confirmed as the Cuban President said there are a “high number of victims”

A worker at Havana’s Calixto Garcia Hospital told Reuters one person had died from burns and other trauma, two others were in a serious condition.

The domestic flight was scheduled to take one hour and 20 minutes.

A worker at Havana’s Calixto Garcia Hospital told Reuters one person had died from burns and other trauma, two others were in a serious condition.

According to local media, the airline is notorious among Cubans for its frequent delays and cancellations, which cubana blames on a lack of parts and airplanes due to the US trade embargo on the island.

This is Cuba’s third major aviation accident since 2008.

Last year, a Cuban military plane crashed into a hillside in the western province of Artemisa, killing eight troops on board.

In November 2010, an AeroCaribbean flight from santiago to Havana crashed in bad weather as it flew over central Cuba, killing all 68 people, including 28 foreigners, in what was Cuba’s worst air disaster in more than 20 years.

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