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Cablegate: Piper Seneca Pa-34 Crashes in Beira Killing Six

VZCZCXRO8487
RR RUEHBZ RUEHDU RUEHJO RUEHMR RUEHRN
DE RUEHTO #0914 2661720
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 221720Z SEP 08
FM AMEMBASSY MAPUTO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 9370
INFO RUCNSAD/SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON 0236

UNCLAS MAPUTO 000914

SIPDIS

STATE FOR EEB/TRA
STATE PLEASE PASS TO DEPT OF TRANSPORTATION AND NTSB

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EAIR MZ
SUBJECT: PIPER SENECA PA-34 CRASHES IN BEIRA KILLING SIX

1. According to news reports and eye-witness accounts, a
U.S.-made twin engine PA-34-220T Piper Seneca, registered in
Durban, South Africa as ZS-LTX, crashed at 14:30 on Saturday
September 20, approximately 30 meters offshore from the
seaside Palmeiras neighborhood on the outskirts of Beira in
Sofala province, en route to Beira International Airport
(BEW) from Quelimane Airport (UEL). Contacts in Mozambique's
Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) confirmed to PolEconoff that
there were 2 pilots and 4 passengers. There were no
survivors, and the victims have been identified in news
reports as South African citizens Louisa Suzana, Daniel
Johane, Wilson Zao, and Michel Paul. As of yet, the CAA has
not requested NTSB assistance.

2. The CAA is currently carrying out an investigation into
the cause of the crash, and has yet to identify the owner of
the plane. South African High Commission contacts told
Emboffs that they also have not located the owner. The plane
has been transported from the crash site to Beira
International Airport. Initial reports suggest that the
plane may have run out of fuel, though eye-witnesses
indicated that the plane,s pilot may have been attempting
stunt maneuvers before losing control of the aircraft. One
eyewitness (a professional pilot who lives near Beira)
reported that there were no signs of fuel leakage, with two
intact blades--one feathered, the other not. According to
South African Civil Aviation Authority records, the plane was
last involved in a minor accident on landing at Sishen
Aerodrome, South Africa on 10 March 2005.
Chapman

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