A passenger flight, Precision Air, crashed into Lake Victoria on ground of bad weather as it ventured to make a landing at Bukoba. The rescue team has been able to save 24 people out of the 43 people on board the plane.
Tragedy strikes as Precision Air, a passenger flight, crashes into Lake Victoria, which is the largest lake in Africa, in Bukoba, the western region of the country of Tanzania on November 7, 2022.
The state broadcaster said that during a rough and turbulent weather, the passenger plane had tried to make a landing at an airport in the lakeside city of Bukoba.
TBC reported that the plane had a departure from the city of Dar es Salaam and was en route to Bukoba until it tragically collapsed into Lake Victoria on Sunday morning due to harsh weather conditions.
There were 43 people on board the Precision Air before the crash took place. Out of those 43, only 24 people made it out alive.
A rescue party took their boats and was seen around the tail fin of the crashed passenger aircraft on the shores of Lake Victoria.
According to TBC, rescue boats were emplaced and emergency workers continued to rescue the other passengers that were stuck inside the plane.
The circulation of video footage and pictures on social media displayed the passenger plane, carrying 43 people, on the verge of undergoing full submersion.
The only part of the plane that could be seen was its brown and green-coloured tail that was above the waterline of Lake Victoria.
Samia Hassan, the President of Tanzania told the people to stay calm and let the rescue undertaking go on smoothly.
The President tweeted saying that she was saddened by the news of Precision Air’s crash and said “let’s be calm at this moment when rescuers are continuing with the rescue mission while praying to God to help us.”
Majaliwa Jackson, a fisherman, who was a witness to the tragic site of the crash spoke to BBC and explained how he nearly lost his life while trying to save the pilots who were trapped in the cockpit.
In an interview with BBC from the confines of his hospital bed in Bukoba, Majaliwa Jackson said that he was horrified at the sight of the passenger plane’s change of direction which ultimately led to the crash into Lake Victoria.
Jackson along with three other fishermen dashed towards the area where the plane had landed and assisted in opening the rear door by shattering it with a rowing oar.
Jackson’s action helped passengers who were seated towards the rear of the aircraft and were saved.
He then went to the front and took a dive into the water. Jackson, using signs, communicated with one of the pilots through the cockpit window.
According to Majaliwa Jackson, the pilot instructed him to break the window screen.
He said that he came out of the water and saw that the airport security had arrived. He then asked for a tool that can be used to smash the window screen.
Jackson continued by saying that the airport security team handed him an axe but was prevented by a public announcement speaker from doing so.
He said that they had a talk with the pilots who told them that the cockpit had no water leakage.
After the announcement, he said that he went back into the water to bid adieu to the pilot but the pilot demonstrated that he desired to be saved.
According to Majaliwa Jackson, “He pointed out the cockpit emergency door to me. I swam back up and took a rope and tied it to the door and we tried to pull it with other boats, but the rope broke and hit me in the face and knocked me unconscious. The next thing I knew I was here at the hospital.”
Majaliwa Jackson has been deemed a hero for his exemplary behaviour and for showing courage by risking his own life to help the victims during the plane crash.
One million Tanzanian Shillings has been awarded to him and he has also been presented with an offer to work in the fire and rescue brigade for his commendable attempt.
A tribute in honor of the 19 lives that were lost was hosted on Monday at the local football stadium in Bukoba.
Kassim Majaliwa, the Prime Minister of Tanzania, spoke at the service and said that the cost of the funerals will be compensated by the government.
He also said that a thorough investigation will be performed to ascertain the reason for the crash.