CHINA: Relatives of Chinese plane crash victims demand to see bodies of their loved onesRecord ID: 382198
- Title: CHINA: Relatives of Chinese plane crash victims demand to see bodies of their loved ones
- Date: 27th August 2010
- Summary: GIRL AND BOY CRYING
- Embargoed: 11th September 2010 13:00
- Location: China
- Country: China
- Topics: Disasters / Accidents / Natural catastrophes,Transport
- Reuters ID: LVA63MDQ0J4TRGLJJANT0LWLUHLP
- Story Text: Relatives of plane crash victims gathered at a local hospital on Thursday (August 26) in northeast China, demanding to see the bodies of their family members.
A passenger plane overshot a runway while landing at a new airport in in Yichun, a remote city of one million in Heilongjiang province late on Tuesday (August 24), bursting into flames and killing 42 people of 96 on board in the nation's worst air disaster since 2004.
Some relatives of the victims said local officials had put them in hotels in the city, but no further arrangements had been made, so they gathered at one of the local hospitals where the injured are being treated, in the hope that they could speak to the media.
But local police had tried to stop them from speaking on camera in the hospital corridor.
"We flew all the way here. We haven't slept since we heard about the news at 8.00 a.m. (0000 GMT) yesterday morning," said a man who had lost his son-in-law and flown to Yichun from Sichuan province in the southwest.
The bodies have been kept at the local morgue for DNA tests and family members have not been allowed access.
"I want to see him as soon as possible. I want to see the body if he is dead," said a man who had lost his brother.
The accident will be a jolt for China's fast-growing aviation sector, which has had no major accident in recent years, thanks to stricter safety rules, better training and relatively young fleets of mainly Western-made aircraft.
The Henan Airlines plane crashed at 9.36 pm (1336 GMT) after flying from provincial capital Harbin, the Civil Aviation Administration of China said.
There were 91 passengers, including five children, as well five crew members on board the ERJ-190, built by Brazil's Embraer, official news agency Xinhua said.
Yichun has a small domestic airport that only opened last year, one of an increasing number of airports built in distant parts of China to help boost economic development.
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