At least 17 people have died and 40 taken to hospital after a military plane transporting troops crashed in the southern Philippines, the Philippine defense minister said.
Ninety-two people, most of them army personnel, were on board the C-130 Hercules transport aircraft when the accident happened as it tried to land on Jolo Island in Sulu province around midday on Sunday, Defence Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said in a statement.
The C-130 aircraft of the Philippine Air Force had a mishap on landing on the island of Jolo, the air force said in a statement.
“So far 40 wounded and injured were rescued and 17 bodies recovered,” Lorenzana said.
Earlier, General Cirilito Sobejana told reporters that at least 40 people have been rescued from the burning wreckage of the C-130.
“Responders are at the site now. We are praying we can save more lives,” Sobejana said. “It’s very unfortunate. The plane missed the runway, and it was trying to regain power but failed and crashed.”
Sobejana said the aircraft had been carrying troops from Cagayan de Oro on the southern island of Mindanao when it “missed the runway” as it tried to land on Jolo.
The plane tried to “regain power but didn’t make it”, he told local media, describing the accident as “very unfortunate”.