Chapecoense plane ran out of fuel before crash, say authorities

26 December 2016 22:02

The plane carrying the Chapecoense football team ran out of fuel before crashing, Colombian aviation authorities have confirmed.

The aircraft, operated by Bolivian company LaMia, came down in mountainous territory near Medellin last month, killing 71 people on board.

Officials investigating the cause of the crash have stated that errors on the part of the pilot, the airline and Bolivian flight regulators were to blame, rather than a technical malfunction.

Colonel Freddy Bonilla, Colombia’s secretary for air safety, told the media: “No technical factor was part of the accident, everything involved human error, added to a management factor in the company’s administration and the management and organisation of the flight plans by the authorities in Bolivia.”

He stated that the Bolivian authorities and LaMia “accepted conditions for the flight presented in the flight plan that were unacceptable”.

It is also claimed that the BAE 146 Avro RJ85 aircraft was nearly 400 kilograms over its weight limit.

The plane was travelling to Medellin from Santa Cruz in Bolivia when it came down while waiting for clearance to land.

Chapecoense players, officials and a number of journalists were travelling for the Copa Sudamericana final against Atletico Nacional. The Brazilian side were later named as winners of the competition after Atletico requested that they be granted the trophy.

Moments of silence have been held in football matches across the world since the tragedy, while clubs in Brazil’s top flight have promised to loan players to Chapecoense for free and called for legislation to be brought in that would prevent them from being relegated for the next three years.

Guests including FIFA president Gianni Infantino and CONMEBOL chief Alejandro Dominguez, as well as thousands of fans, attended a tribute ceremony at the club’s Arena Conda this month.

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