- Title: Plane crash survivors making progress
- Date: 5th December 2016
- Summary: MEDELLIN, COLOMBIA (DECEMBER 5, 2016) (REUTERS) VARIOUS EXTERIORS OF SAN VICENTE HOSPITAL WHERE SURVIVORS ARE BEING CARED FOR DOCTORS ARRIVING TO NEWS CONFERENCE LOGO OF CHAPECOENSE TEAM JOURNALISTS (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) DIRECTOR OF SAN VICENTE HOSPITAL, DR. FERNEY RODRIGUEZ, SAYING: "Jackson [Follmann] is very strong. His family is very strong. They have shown great strength, great strength in these moments. They have learned what happened. He told us he prefers life to his leg and knows about his situation and knows that he had to lose his leg to save his life. It has given us a lot of strength to see how strong they are." GENERAL VIEW OF NEWS CONFERENCE (SOUNDBITE) (Portuguese) CHAPECOENSE ORTHOPAEDIST, MARCOS ANDRE SONAGLI, SAYING: "The three patients, Rafael [journalist Rafael Valmorbida], Alan [player Alan Ruschel] and Follmann - they are in a more favourable recovery. They can sit and have a less invasive recovery. Neto [player Neto] continues to be aided with mechanical ventilation." VARIOUS OF NEWS CONFERENCE
- Embargoed: 20th December 2016 20:47
- Keywords: plane crash Chapecoense Copa Sudamericana
- Location: RIO NEGRO AND MEDELLIN, COLOMBIA AND COCHABAMBA, BOLIVIA
- City: RIO NEGRO AND MEDELLIN, COLOMBIA AND COCHABAMBA, BOLIVIA
- Country: Colombia
- Reuters ID: LVA0015BLZ41Z
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:PLEASE NOTE: THIS EDIT INCLUDES MATERIAL THAT WAS ORIGINALLY 4:3
Survivors from the Colombia plane crash that killed 71 last week continue to make progress doctors said on Monday (December 5).
Only six people - three players, a journalist and two crew members - survived the disaster when Chapecoense's charter plane hit a mountain en route to their Copa Sudamericana showdown in Medellin city.
Dr. Ferney Rodriguez, who has been treating the players at Medellin's San Vicente Hospital, said that goalkeeper Jackson Follmann, is now aware his right leg was amputated below his knee to save his life.
"Jackson [Jackson Follmann]. His family is very strong. They have shown great strength, great strength in these moments. They have learned what happened, he has told us. He prefers life to his leg and knows about his situation and knows that he had to lose his leg to save his life. It has given us a lot of strength to see how strong they are," he said.
For several days after his amputation, Follmann, who was bandaged and sedated, was unaware of the loss of his leg.
Chapecoense's orthopaedist Marcos Andre Sonagli gave an update on the other survivors.
"The three patients, Rafael [journalist Rafael Valmorbida], Alan [player Alan Ruschel] and Follmann - they are in a more favourable recovery. They can sit and have a less invasive recovery. Neto [player Neto] continues to be aided with mechanical ventilation," he said.
The recovery update came as South American soccer's governing body CONMEBOL awarded the 2016 Copa Sudamericana championship to Chapecoense.
Colombia's Club Atletica Nacional, which would have played Chapecoense in the biggest game in the club's history, asked for the trophy to be awarded to the Brazilian team to honour the victims, CONMEBOL said in a statement.
CONMEBOL's council decided to honour that request with all of the "sport and economic prerogatives that entails," the statement said. Club Atletico was also given a one-time Fair Play award.
Meanwhile, in Bolivia, flight technician Erwin Tumiri who also survived the crash, recounted details to the media.
"I touched my body like so and hit myself a few times to react. As I said, I thought it was a nightmare. I thought I had gone to sleep in the plane and that I was dreaming. I could only hear Ximena [referring to fellow crew member Ximena Suarez] shouting in pain. She was wearing her harness in her seat with the plastic. I rushed to where she was, uncovered her and I unbuckled her seatbelt and jammed one of her feet with mine and I continued pulling and that's how I got her up," he said.
"I knew that in any accident, they have instructed us to stay, to turn on light and that was because I knew that they were coming for us. I made signals, nothing else, with my flashlight and they came zig-zagging. I saw many lights from far away and shouted "help, help" and they responded "where are you?" I continued shouting "help" until their flashlights and all of that appeared," he added.
The 25-year-old, who had been released from a Colombian hospital near the crash site on Friday, thanked well-wishers upon his arrival in Bolivia Saturday (December 3).
"I am very happy to be in my country and I thank all those people who were concerned about me. Thank you very much," he said.
Tumiri and Bolivian flight attendant Ximena Suarez were the two crew members who survived the tragedy. Subsequent to the crash, hospital officials said both crew members were bruised but not in critical condition.
The LAMIA Bolivia BAe146 airliner apparently ran out of fuel, lost electrical power and was preparing for an emergency landing when it crashed.
Reports in Brazilian media that the plane, which circled outside Medellin for 16 minutes while another aircraft made an emergency landing, had barely enough fuel for the flight from Bolivia have outraged relatives of the victims.
Bolivian President Evo Morales pledged to take "drastic measures" to determine what caused the crash. Bolivia has suspended LAMIA's operating license and replaced the national aviation authority's management.
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