Diapaga/Crash: The two survivors testify

Nicolas Thiombiano and his niece Essita Yonli are the miraculous survivors of the plane crash which claimed the lives of five people yesterday Wednesday in Diapaga (East). This Thursday, in front of the government delegation who came to comfort them, they returned to the tragedy. 'I was among a colleague and a lady who was going to her husband's funeral today (Thursday). We were behind the pilot. The fire came from the pilot's side and caught my left foot. I saw an opening at the bottom of the plane and dove. My uncle Thiombiano Nicolas followed me,' testifies Essita Yonli, one of the two survivors of the crash in Diapaga of the Lead'Air aircraft. This Thursday, they were still at the CMA in Fada N'Gourma, all showing traces of burns on their faces, lower and upper limbs...in short, on all parts of the body. 'When we got out of the plane, the fire had caught my clothes, I took them off to throw them away. While running, I also tore off my left shoe which had caught fire. I found myself under a tree and hel p came to help me. Then the plane exploded along with the other passengers. I thank God who saved me,' continued Essita Yonli in front of the government delegation led by the Minister of Transport, Roland Somda. What happened ? 'What was reported to me was that it was 12:35 p.m., when in addition to the pilot, 6 other passengers boarded the aircraft to take off for Fada N'Gourma. After a run of approximately 500 m, the plane was actually able to take off. However, 580 m further on, he crashed after hitting two trees,' explained the IA gendarmerie commander. He adds: 'thus, the FDS on site and the accompanying passengers who witnessed it, quickly rushed to help the injured and extinguish the aircraft which was still on fire. So, the injured were taken to the CMA of Diapaga for first aid.' In terms of damage, he confirms that the accident unfortunately resulted in 5 deaths and 2 injuries who are already being treated at the CMA level and who will then be evacuated. According to the doctor responsible for t he CMA of Diapaga, Boris Tanliré, for the moment, the state of health of the patients is stable. 'Indeed, yesterday, after the plane crash, we received two injured people. These injuries are due to a burn. We were able to diagnose a third degree burn and a deep second degree burn. We recommended evacuation to a higher level for better care of a patient,' specifies the doctor. Do you confirm that they are out of danger? Mr. Tanliré responds in the affirmative: 'Yes, in any case, at present, they are out of danger.' Coming to bring the government's compassion to the victims, the minister in charge of transport, Roland Somda, said he was saddened by the tragedy. 'At the beginning of the afternoon, we received information that a small plane from the private company Lead'Air had crashed at the Diapaga airfield a few minutes after takeoff. So, immediately, we found ourselves at the crisis room at Ouagadougou international airport to set up a crisis unit to be able to centralize all the information linked to thi s tragedy and also be able to assist the families of the victims. He specifies that this visit aims to note the impact of the incident on the site and on behalf of the highest authorities and the government, to express his compassion, his sincere condolences to the families and loved ones of the victims and to wish to recover the survivors. The conclusions of the investigation report expected 'We came with a team of experts to be able to collect information and really produce a document that can pinpoint the causes of this tragedy that we all deplore,' he says. This tragedy, he said, 'comes at a time when we are preparing the campaign for air services to certain cities in Burkina. It is true that this Diapaga aerodrome had not been included among those to be operated in this first phase.' And, this incident, he said, will make it possible to call upon all airlines which operate at Burkinabe airports and aerodromes to be much more vigilant and professional. The minister says he hopes that the conclusions of the investigation report into the tragedy will make it possible to capitalize and be able to offer quality and safety services to the population. In the afternoon, the victims of the crash (dead and injured people) were all evacuated to Ouagadougou. Source: Burkina Information Agency

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